LONG TAN 2006

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: War and Military  |  House: Booksie Classic
40th anniversary of the Battle of Long Tan, Vietnam
Memorial, King's Park, Perth.

Submitted: December 25, 2007

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Submitted: December 25, 2007

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LONG TAN +

Stand and see
these
the thinning ranks.
Forty marching years -
when did they
have time to grow
so old?

Stand and see
these
the thinning ranks. 
A hundred meters
across the sward,
colours trooping proud,
the shrinking battalions march
towards the shrine
of our remembrance.

Stand and see
these
the thinning ranks.
Ageing wives and friends and
adult children
with youngsters of their own
to cling and watch,
as you honour our names
etched in bronze –
forever young.

Stand and see
these
the thinning ranks.
Expatriates,
beribboned with Westmoreland’s tinsel,
under their star spangled banner stand and
watch real heroes pass.

Stand and see
these
the thinning ranks,
placing wreathes in honour
of honoured dead.

In my heart I hear a protest tune
echo down the long years –
“Sagst mir wo die blumen sind?”


+ Battle of Long Tan, Nui Dat, Phuoc Tuy Province, August 18, 1966.
by James Gagiikwe © 2006


© Copyright 2017 James Gagiikwe. All rights reserved.

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