Saturday, 27 December 2014

Dash

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Section Battle Drills are a fundamental part of a British soldier's basic training. They are, quite literally, 'drilled' into recruits until they become second nature. They are designed to teach the six phases of a battle and by so doing they maximise both the individual soldier's chances of survival and the section's chances of closing with and destroying the enemy.

This poem is based on an event which took place on a range in Brecon when my section corporal used a 7.62 Self Loading Rifle fired from just behind me to simulate enemy fire. Funny old thing; the second drill; 'Reaction to Effective Enemy Fire' (Dash, Down, Crawl, Observe, Sights, Fire) still rattles through my brain every now and again.

Dash

I ran.
Water burst in the air,
stone split and spat at my feet
sharp staccato cracks filled my ears.
One thought, no time for more,
Take cover
STONES FLEW
COVER
Down, crawl, observe, sights
... Fire.
Later as I checked my feet,
I found the hole
... in my boot's rubber heel.

John Carré Buchanan
27 December 2014

Thursday, 25 December 2014

Christmas Morning

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Merry Christmas everyone, I thought I would post this short poem inspired by memories of my father throwing my new 'paratrooper Action Man' out of a first floor window, whilst I stood below looking forward to my go;-)

I hope you enjoy the poem and once again; Merry Christmas.

Christmas Morning

Giggles erupt from the huddle.
Excited nudges, toothless smiles.
The air fills with high pitched chatter,
as children talk all at once; no one listening.
Too much fun.

Shiny paper torn asunder, thrust behind.
Fingers break into cardboard boxes
to grasp treasures within.

Hovering in the background,
camera flashing,
parents revel in the joy before them.
A Christmas scene played out
in a thousand living rooms.

It won't be long before little voices everywhere plead;
"Daddy, please can I have a go?
...... IT IS MINE !"

John Carré Buchanan
05 December 2014

Thursday, 11 December 2014

The Toy

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I wrote this poem for the next Guernsey Poet's open mic, the non compulsory theme being; 'Toys'.

It is a sad fact that children in countries that have bee affected by war fall victim to ordnance which litters the countryside. I have based this poem in a non-specific tropical country but munitions left over from both World Wars still litter the fields of Europe.

The Toy

Quick bare feet flick red dust from the path
It swirls briefly in the warm dry air
then settles amidst golden grass

The boys jump back and forth across a ditch
the game, follow the leader,
faster and faster across the scrubland.

Sharp eyes scan the leader's foot fall
the young mind adjusts each step
to ensure it's placed precisely on the trail.

A ray of light cast eight minutes ago
by a burning sun, millions of miles away, stops the game
as a glint catches sharp eyes.

Young hands grasp the unusual, shiny, object.
They rotate it, examine it, shake it
and admire smiling reflections in its silver skin.

The chase begins anew; the cylinder - a baton
passed from hand to hand in a relay
which takes the two home.

A voice calls, they race inside
the new 'toy' tossed to a corner
where it bounces and spins on the earthen floor

Later, in the gloom, of the sparsely furnished home
father steps on a strange metallic object
and a bead of sweat runs down his back.

John Carré Buchanan
08 December 2014

Friday, 5 December 2014

Smiles

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I was in town this morning looking at all the ‘tat’ that people are buying in preparation for Christmas. It was sad to think that so much of it would fall out of favour, be broken, or simply thrown away before the New Year starts. It was this train of thought that led to the following poem;

Smiles

Trucks spill their contents to the floor
little fingers pick through piles of fetid waste
to grasp at scraps others discard.
Not for these, shiny paper.
Not for them, a three course meal.
Here on a city dump
a doll with no arms,
a wheel with no spokes
or blocks with letters they can't read
bring wider smiles than many
on 'developed' streets.

John Carré Buchanan
05 December 2014