WALKING DEAD 1917 | By: Terry Collett | | Category: Poem - Life Bookmark and Share


The nurse had left.

George had improved little,
but got angry when the nurse
was about, and was only calmed
when Polly was in attendance;
so His father let the nurse go
and allowed Polly to nurse him.

Dudman didn't like it,
but could do nothing about it;
another maid was employed
to cover Polly's duties.

George sat in chair
by the window
staring out,
January sun
was dull in the sky,
clouds drifted slowly.

Polly tidied up the bed
and arranged
George's clothes
by the side.

Look at them,
George said,
pointing out the window,
creeping along the trench.

Polly went to the window
and peered out
where George pointed.

The old gardener and his boy
walked along by the hedge
carrying tools.

Germans, Polly, see them,
where's my gun?
George said anxiously.

Polly stood beside him:
it's Cartwright and his boy
walking by the hedge, George,
she said softly.

George peered hard:
Not Germans?

No not Germans,
Polly affirmed.

George sighed,
held Polly's hand.

Look like Germans,
he said.

She wished
he was well again,
not unhinged
by shells and gunfire.

Shell shock,
the doctor had said,
who came the other week
after George had a bad attack
of nerves and shouted
and hit out at the nurse.

Only Polly
calmed him down
and he held her
as he wept.

Dunton was there,
George said suddenly,
one minute there next gone,
blown apart,
blood on me
and his arm in the trench
a few feet away.  

Polly hugged him,
kissed his head.

George saw about him
the walking dead.

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