Flanders fields

Forgotten fields give birth in blood,
scarlet reaches high, as monkish hood,
reminders of the truth of hidden death,
memories of sudden, full stopped breath,
as stone remembers flesh as earthly food.

Cast corpses on the breast of bitter day,
chewed slow through mud and icy rain,
they gather in the darkened halls of youth;
the years denied.

Time does hold the brush forever high,
the colours fade, the paint does slowly dry,
and only in the stories can they live,
the gift which grief and hope will always give!
Light steps upon the terraces of  war;
the sacrifice is honoured evermore.



Those flattened fields of Flanders
scream of battered souls
and muffled howls which pressed
beneath time’s tread has crushed
the cry of hurt beneath firm soil.

The heaving shape of shouldered pain
is locked by grasses -green terrain,
which grips and holds imprisoned fast,
the rotted world which once had passed:
in steady tread and huddled roar,
a raging spread of weeping sore.

The silence now holds heavy court
upon the place where thousands fought
and died with no-one there to see
them sucked beneath the seething sea;
a muddy grave which beckons still
with glutinous grin alive and well
beneath the veil of fragile green.

1988 – following a visit to the ‘trenches in Ypres.

About rosross

Editor, writer, poet.
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8 Responses to Flanders fields

  1. brian miller says:

    the second one feels a bit more gritty…a bit more intense, maybe because you had just visited….the emotions in it seem just under the surface….nicely done to form….

  2. Oh this was a response to Flanders Fields, and the second one touched by shock almost but the second with the lingering sorrow and pain of the horrible wars.

  3. Your second one reminds me of something my mum said to me about her visit to that area. She felt haunted.

  4. Tony Maude says:

    Not quite the rondeau form … it’s pretty tricky to write but the results are usually worth the effort.

    Both of these poems are great reminders of the terrible price that was paid in WWI; as Brian said, the second is more immediate, emotional, gritty and raw.

  5. shanyns says:

    Wow this pair is just so well done. Nicely crafted and a find addition to the poetic family of Flanders Fields and rondeau.

  6. All in all poetic and raw emotions are well understood.

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