VIA – Veterans in Action

I’d like this poem to be dedicated to all servicemen and women who suffer from or have suffered from PTSD. Also all who have had to deal with this terrifying and debilitating disorder.

It was written with the lads in mind who were shot at dawn by firing squad for desertion during the great war. Many of them being underage.

A Mother’s Last Dawn.

The cracking of gunshot fired at dawn,
but no sound from the bugle for her son’s final morn,
the note in her hand she holds close to her heart,
a boy’s hurried words of an adventure to start,
of travelling the world and seeing such sights,
of friends to be made, of laughter filled nights.
But reality was fear, and horror, and pain,
the friends made were lost, sights invaded his brain.
He sobbed in his sleep, ‘please don’t make me go back.
Get down on the floor mum, we’re under attack.’
The soothing and hugs couldn’t dry falling tears,
from this boy in her arms far too old for his years.
Every creak of a door, every window banged shut,
had him trembling with terror, his face marked with soot.
He slept under the bed, she wept in a chair,
he’s safe from harm now, he shan’t return there.
But one day they came knocking,
they dragged him away.
‘Coward!’ ‘Deserter!’
she heard them all say.
Doors closed in her face, all alone she did mourn,
after the cracking of gunshot, fired at dawn.

Cath Waterhouse Sept 2015

PTSD Awareness Month - Day 17