Return to Mount Tumbledown

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The ridge-line broke its verdant back

casting stone on jagged shoulders,  

here, millennial eruptions 

hurled dantean hell-like boulders.

 

Revisiting, remembering,

that night of flared intrusion,

delivered through embattled dreams,

adrenalin fueled confusion.

 

He’d climbed this bloody path before

like the stations of the cross,

and though through trials he won his war

it weighed on him as loss.

 

So, with weakened knees unfailing

he met the final rise,

to watch a pink sky paling

through older wiser eyes.

 

acceptanceforgivenesslossPeace

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Comments

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Wolfgar Miere

Tue 31st Jan 2017 22:36

Thanks Ray and elP,

I enjoyed reading all your comments and am very grateful that you took time to read and respond.

The Falklands campaign was a bitter one, it was fought in nasty conditions in tuff terrain and often hand to hand, combat of the most gruesome kind.

Whilst serving in another campaign I had a friend who as a young soldier in 2 PARA had fought at Goose Green.

I remember him telling me that when they over-ran Argentine entrenched positions some of the Argentinian conscripts had hidden beneath the duck boards they had lined the trenches with, he related vividly how he and others engaged those soldiers hidden below, killing them all.

They had made no visible signal to surrender and as the battle was ongoing they were left no alternative than to kill what were basically fish in a barrel, (with bullets and grenades, imagine that horror) it was not a memory he took any pride or pleasure in recalling.

I suspect it troubled him then and still does now. I think of him and others when I re-read what I have written here.

I hope he has found some peace, as I hope all soldiers do, irrespective of origins of those whose sometimes demonic orders they are expected to follow.

Thanks again for reading X

David.

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elPintor

Tue 31st Jan 2017 19:57

Please pardon me, David, but I somehow had the idea that "Tumbledown" was figurative. Now that my I've been relieved of my ignorance, I found this...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Mount_Tumbledown

As an American, I have little knowledge of the Falklands War. It only so happens that I just finished a chapter of a book that spends a few pages describing the lead-up and the possible reasons behind the strategies of Argentina's Galtieri and Thatcher.

But, your piece and this article aren't really about that. The article is harrowing. Though, I'm sure it only hints at the real terror of battle. And, your writing casts aside all politics to allow us inside the mind and heart of a human and remind us of war's true cost--something society seems to forget when swept up by jingoistic calls for patriotism and victory.

It's a strong piece that goes a great distance toward explaining that the battle for some isn't over simply because the war is done.

Thanks for sharing, David.

elP x

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raypool

Tue 31st Jan 2017 13:15

This to me is wonderful David. Reading it carefully, which is increasingly difficult for me on WOL for reasons of concentration, I am finding a whole encapsulation of experience. I notice that there is at last a kind of separation occurring , or at least the desire for one to be expressed. A mastery of description lays down a scorched earth landscape, as if deeply carved in the mind - then the rise up to another dimension altogether. I sense the advance of age as a factor, a moment of acceptance.
Go for it.

Ray x

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