I could see him

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: War and Military  |  House: Booksie Classic
Literature homework

Submitted: September 27, 2013

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Submitted: September 27, 2013

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One spring morning in the park, I could see him running across the damp lawn. The ball, like a child in a shaded orchard, danced around his feet as he ran. His mates chased him but they were nowhere near as fast. He skipped over the ground towards the goal. A boy with a freckled face caught his feet, tripping him up. He landed on the grass with a tumble; getting a mouth full of mud and trickle of blood on his left thigh in the process. He chuckled as the curly one heaved him up. When he kicked off from the sidelines, the ball veered off at the strangest angle. A swirly-brown haired was watching from the park bench. Her name was Meg White and she was an art student. He said his name was Henry Kurt but people called Harry.

One summer day in the park, I could see him sitting on the bench, leg over knee, and elbow over the back. Meg White was giggling at the stubble movements of his lips as the brush brushed across canvas. Her face was mostly hidden by the easel but he could still see her cheeks rose red and her eyes close in delight.  The sun began to fall and shadows grew long. His head perked up and he jumped to his feet. He went round the side of easel and gazed at the painting. He held her waist with his left arm and his lips brushed the top of her head as subtly as the brush. In the corner of the canvas it read: “Handsome Henry Kurt (Harry)”.

One autumn evening in the park, I could see him perched on the edge of the bench; tapping his foot, holding vibrant rose and toying with a small black box that fit snugly into his palm. He saw her arrive and stood to attention. He emptied his hands and whispered into her ear. She nodded and leapt into his arms. Just as she jumped down a smart man in a kilt marched over. Eager to please, he signed.  He wrote on the dotted line: Henry Kurt. He thought it childish to write Harry.

One winter evening in the park, I could see him waded across the watery marsh. His boots, like rats on a relatively fresh corpse, bit into his feet as he hurried. Shells chased him but they were not quite as fast. He trudged through the mud towards the trench. The wire with the spiky barbs tangled his feet, tripping him up. He landed on the cold earth with a pound; getting a mouth full of mud and a thick gash above his knee in the process. He cried as the officer tugged him up. When he was almost there, a blast threw a splinter, creating a weird angle just to the right of his nose. A swirling, black bomb was coming down fast from the dark clouds. As it came down, Henry Kurt flew up, up, and apart.

This spring mourning in the park, nobody could see me. As quickly as my limbs went, as did everyone I loved. Meg’s lips knew another’s cheek and they told it I had died. I couldn’t play football, nobody offered to paint me. The only woman I would see walking up the path for me was the one in black come to take me to sleep. How I wait for the sleep. For though Henry Kurt is still tossing and turning, the one people called Harry drifted off in no-man’s-land with the burnt smell gunpowder in the war-torn, poisoned air.


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