Brian wasn’t looking for trouble,
when he entered the ward’s military kitchen
but, there, a young and wounded man
asked him ‘You a conchie chum?
You look healthy, willing and able.’
He answered simply, flat, straightforward;
‘That’s the way I read the Bible!’
The soldier snorted; reached for his mess tin.
‘Listen mate, I’m only eighteen;
back from France where my pal was shot
shouted for Mum as he clasped and dropped
(I’ve heard a lot of shouts for Mum)
but at Dunkirk I got hands on a German,
stuffed his face in water ‘til his lungs were clogged.
I shouted him down, kicking, ‘til he wasn’t moving.’
Eye met eye at the door of the kitchen,