Sunday, December 5, 2010

The Last Post

The Jap sniper’s rifle
with shoulder against the post
had the kick of a tethered heifer

We found the ammo under the bed
hidden by your father
a war souvenir they say

When farmers became soldiers
and marched to lands beyond
the red of the dominions

The Taranaki mud
giving way to tropical sludge
or desert sands

They say the bullet travelled some five miles
in a descending line
from the boxthorn hedge in which we had tunneled

cocooned from the world
in our thorny stockade
we waited for re-percussions

Roger Smith  November 2010