Three Foot Soldiers


The little troop of us
pumped legs in ramshackle time,
fists determinedly swinging,
eyes skimming the cornfield for enemies.

We could hear
some kids on swings singing,
odd birds chirp, and our commanders orders.
We were Japs today.

An unScottish Sun
reddened our backs raw.
Out playing,
hours we went,
leaving snail-trails in the field,
slowing to a trudge,
the game’s laughter dead.

No provisions, and way past dinner,
we fell, rifles at our sides.
We forgot our names
and lay on our backs looking at the sky.

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