I had almost finished this poem for ANZAC day. I'm now posting it for Remembrance Day. It's based on something my brother-in-law, John Lyall, told me about his family.
(for my brother-in-law, John Lyall)
From Australia, my mother made a call.
"What are you doing? "Nothing much at all."
"I remembered young Dave Lyall today,
Your great uncle, killed at Suvla Bay.
At seventeen," And that was young to me,.
David Lyall, left in Gallipoli.
And my grandfather, who was crippled from,
A bullet in the neck got at the Somme.
We cleared my mother's house and found his pack,
The unit number stencilled on the back.
The empires spilled and caused a mighty stain.
This cafe is encased by Auckland's rain.
I think of that old war, and it's so sad,
And long ago. I tap my phone. "Hi, Dad!"
"Whatcha doing?" Nothing much. Work and fun"
No khakied man taught us to fire a gun.
I talk to David Lyall, Davo, my son.