© The Last Post by Phil Bottomley. All Rights Reserved. 2017
Deep in Suburbia in the year of our Lord 1915, a young wife sits in her kitchen with her four year old son. Lying on the kitchen table before her is a letter from her soldier husband.
The year could be 1943 or, 2004, or any year when loved ones are away fighting in a bloody conflict not of their making but one which those whom orchestrated it expect “the few” to give their lives for if necessary!
“Mummy, where are Daddy’s benches?”
“Darling child, come to me,
Your Daddy is in the trenches,
Far across the great North Sea.
The trenches are quite comfortable,
Daddy is dry and warm,
His men are all quite affable,
He’s sheltered from the storm.”
“Will Daddy get hurt by the Huns?”
“That, I cannot say,
Knowing he’s facing deadly guns
All we can do, is pray.”
“Your Daddy is brave, fit and strong
He knows not fear nor dread,
This war, it will not last too long.
Darling. Prayers and then to bed.”
‘Wife, I miss your touch, your smile
I miss our little boy,
We have no time to sit and while,
Out here there is no joy…’
Alone, she reads by candlelight
The letter from her man.
Tears flow for his sorry plight
As only wives tears can.
‘The cold, the screams of injured men,
The mud that’s ankle deep,
I try to lift moral for them
But words are oh, so cheap.
I am frightened, my darling wife,
I try to be brave for the men.
I really fear for my life
My constant thought is; when!…’
The tears flow freely, down both cheeks
The lady is in despair.
First letter in nearly seven weeks,
How she wishes he wasn’t there!
‘When will this madness come to an end?
When will the dove of peace,
Feather its wings and descend
To give us sweet release?
I send my love to my darling son,
And to you, my cherished wife.
I go back now to face the Hun
And the mayhem that’s my life.’