This through the eyes, of a Tommy. Left school at the age of 13. So no Owen or a Sassoon. So he's not clever with words, but he felt the need to write, I write on his behalf. Hence, not so much spellings cheks! TITLE


The story of Passchendaele, Tommy Atkins of Ramsgate, educated at Lillian Road School, could have written. Worked as a lumper, untill, The War, broke out, that is!

I were, part of a detachment, ordered up to the Passchendaele front. Ypers,** sure, lived up to it's name, it's, reputation, ill, got, and reputation. MUD AND MORE MUD! And did it rain! How it rained! As we, trudged, up the line, MUD - MUD! And oh the stench, of death, all around, ether side, up front, that were going too! And weren't all we saw! Passed dead horses, mules, as we finding out - dead men! Parts, bits of men, and of course horses and mules! Arms, legs, torsos, heads! Heads, so freshly cleanly cleaved, eyes, still, saw out, mouths, silently asking, why? What the fook? I read somewhere, that when the heads, cut off, the brain lives on for seven seconds. Bodys ours and Fritz, bellies, full of gas, waiting to burst open, releasing the gas, made by the decaying, guts pent up inside the bellies, stretching, till, the rotting flesh, could not stretch no more, guts bursting out! Saw, rats, running in and out of dead bodies, human, body's, horses and mules to! Death was death, not a judge. Floating, in the shell, holes! Seemed to be, thousands of shell craters, each one of them, had bits of, what was, men, and horses, mules! Like, walking the road to hell, it were like! As, we went up the line, a wiz bang, the sound of a shell, in the air! Us, new bornes, as some wag, called us then, '' plop! '', it landed in a shell ''ole! Lucky for us it were a dud! We, got the wind up good and proper, like! The old blokes, never, even, blink, dear not bat an eye lid! No one spoke, all, quiet, like. The stench- oh that stench! Stench, of fowl water, stench of rotting flesh, of men, mulls, horses, gas, shit, literal, shit, when men had, to take a dump, cort short, off to la bogs! Some I recon, way to slow, pulling up their pants! WOOSH, blown to bits and pieces! All for the sake of a good, much needed, shit! This war, any war is like that! Just not safe, even for a good shit! I was learning fast, to kack in me pants! At least, I got to live, a little, bit longer! Life, could be short-lived, and very brutal, at that, Passchendaele! If a bullet, a shell, did not kill, you, the mud, would! Dragging, as like, hands, were pulling you down, the hands of the devils of hell! Man made, hell! That was Pashdehell!

Just behind us, more wiz-bangs, over our 'heads, only this time, they weren't duds! BANG! Three, shells, exploded. Chums, three in front me, copt it proper bad! Cut in in half, the top half, passed me! His guts, trailing, from his top half! And was he screming! Landed just to the side of me, in to a shell hole! And, I fink he were still alive, well his top half, any way! He was still screaming out loud! When, he, finally sunk down in the mud, his mouth was finally, shut, for good! Two other blokes, well, just, a red mist, that was once - them! MEN! Still, no burial party needed! Onwards, upwards we went! I, was, learning fast! Shut out the sights! I close me ear's, to the sounds, of blokes, screams, and shouwt's, screams for help! One bloke, suddenly, broke, and ran! Straite in to another, fooking, shity shell hole! There, he staid, till, he, disappeared, below The MUD! No hope of us, though some tried to pull him out! Just not, clever, even to think of it! So we, just, look too the front, we trudged on, towards the front trenches! Passed, shell, holes, sculls could be seen, bobbing up down, like Christmas, apples, in a barrel, at a Christmas church fair!

Up front, I could see, four, blokes, struggling with three mules, I saw a fouth, mule, in The Mud, It had slipt of the duckboards . Had not a hope in hell, and hear was indeed hell! it were done fore, that was plain to see! Had shells on it's back! As it strugald, deep and deeper it went! Till - just, bubbles mark it's death!

More and more, dead bodies, human, mules, horses. Bits, peseces, of bodys, of all that once, had been living , flesh, all, mixt up, it were, a were, scruffs, butchers, shop! A chunal house! I read that somewhere or other! Right, I remember, in the News Of The World , a news story, of the murder seen, fore sure, hear were a seen of murder! Still, hear at Ypers, a lot of murdering going on! And, soon, I was goner be a murderer, that is, if, I, ain't murdered first!

Well, dont righly, how come we, those, that made it that far. Were, among, those, who had been in the first wave attack! Them, that were, left, should of been, relieved, and get out of the line! BUT, on seeing, how many of us, were left, they would of been safer to stay with us!

As we took up, our positions in '' The Trench '', that's a laugh and no mistake! It were as like we were in trenches, on Minster mudflats! Back home! JUST MUD AND MORE MUD! And it was pissing down! Not bucking it down, as like, a sea, above us, was, pooring down on us! A long The so called trench, it were sluge, MUD MUD! I came across, a massive, six foot six inches looked, more like he was close on seven foot of him! Saxon, he - WAS HUGE! In his gut, was a British bayonet - facing, holding a rifle, was, a five foot four inch, or should I say, short arce - a bantam, soldier! The Germans byanet, in his throught, who got in first, no way of knowing, well both proper dead now, for sure! And yet, both stood up, in death looking in each others dead eyes! Nither, blink, they had died on each others bayonets!

A bloke, needed a fag, decided to fish out a ciggy. Lit it, then he'd bearly got a drag fron it, when BANG! He was shot and killed by a sniper! Two men, joind him, shot dead, lay in the mud of the trench, with the first, bloke! The sniper, had the three, in his sites! Aye, cigs are proroper, bad for your health!

No sooner, than we'd arrived, then we, had to take on old Fritz! Thats another story, if, I live, to write it, that is!

**As the British, and British empire, troops, called Ypres, Ypres, sounded like Wipers, to the solders, callde, the old town Ypres! So so many Yipe, out, round about's, there. A million, or more of all sides! DEAD!

ken d williams

The Dyslexic Wordsmith

Poetry by ken d williams The PoetBay support member heart!
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Written on 2016-12-24 at 02:32

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