Michael Nolan – The somme 18th November 1916

MichaelMichael Nolan (b. 1950, in Dublin) recently retired from a lifetime spent in education. He was  Principal of a Jesuit Special School for nearly the last twenty years of his teaching career. He also studied Law and was called to the Irish Bar. He has lifelong interest in writing and literature.


The somme 18th November 1916

Why do we eat
it all again
behind the safe front?
Cry salty tears again.
Invoke death for the General’s wife
who’s bloody nightmares wake.

Where were we
that unseasonably warm midwinter day
when it ended
with salty meals just before the charge.
Complain to the Chef about  concrete croutons
bobbing in  murky consomme.
“You mean we pay for floating bodies of loved ones”.

When finishing the meal
with bottles  of  tomorrow
under white sky’s weak sunlight,
dying for love and the last hour
in daylight’s life,
bills  unpaid forever-

How it snows here,
“snowing for the last time”.
Let’s make  way.

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