He walks along story yet untold,

To his gun his hand finds and holds,

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He seeks the truth for all to see,

What a terrible time war can be.

His misconception made him this man,

Bitter, twisted, of killing a fan,

He thought war would be easy and war would be fun,

At that time he knew not how to hold a gun.

Thrown in at the deep end, not taught how to kill,

He thought out of this he would get a thrill,

But what this man found was beyond human conception,

He wanted to turn, run in the opposite direction,

Corpses rotting, lying all over the ground,

That was what this man had found,

The look in men's eyes as they went over the top,

The sound of the rain going: drip, drop, drip, drop.

As if this wasn't enough to drive you crazy,

He was taunted, called fat and lazy,

But who needs friends when you're stuck in a trench?

Where the corpses let out an unbearable stench,

And when finally, no-mans lands awaits you,

You know what you must do,

But this is hard when fighting with fools along side,

Whose inner emotions they try to hide,

But still you trudge on, across no-mans land,

Your feet stick fast, as if in sinking sand,

Onto the floor you fall, one leg twisted,

You're on your own, you can't be assisted.

Wailing you hear as bullets hit flesh,

Plunging deep into organs, a bloody mess,

Still on the floor, you stay and lye,

To the dead you say one last good-bye,

When a bullets strikes you right in the arm,

You thought on the floor, you would come to no harm.

Another bullet sinking into your back,

Now of blood you are starting to lack,

Blood gushing and running all over the floor,

Leaving trails of this great bloody war,

For the next hour you suffer, screaming in pain,

You thought in this war, experience you would gain,

Instead all you have is a free trip out of this life,

Away from all the trouble and all of the strife.

The dawn is breaking the beginning of a new day,

As the last few words you try to say,

With one last breath you try to utter,

But nothing comes out; you just choke and stutter.

Your life has so quickly come to an end,

Only fourteen, but you were just following trend,

War isn't a thing to be rushed into,

As we've learnt from the mistake of the young David Shintu,

His mother distraught from the news the letter did bring,

Found some rope tied it into a ring,

Attached the rope onto the ceiling, hopped onto a chair,

Then kicked it out from underneath her, eyes glazing over into a stare.

She was found the next day by the man from next door,

Who found a letter next to her, lying on the floor,

It explained all the horrors war did bring,

And how she would never again hear the birds sing,

For now her son had gone, her life was worth nothing at all,

As her husband was shot just the previous fall,

She told of wars and the horrors that it does bring,

War truly is a terrible thing.

By Adam Bracewell