We don’t know if he ever used
a lucifer to light his fag
but we suspect he never packed
his troubles in his old kit bag –
he’d far too many.
We don’t know if he ever asked
what’s the use of worrying
but when we read the diary
they brought back in his old kit bag
we knew he worried
about his loved ones back at home;
about the boys who went over the top,
the comrades he knew would not return;
about the hissing mustard gas
that would one day find him, cause
his slow and agonising death.
Vietnam, Afghanistan, Iraq;
it never is worthwhile
but we still hold great grandad’s old kit bag
and try to smile.
Bill Lythgoe has been writing poetry seriously for about seven years. He has won four prizes in Writing Magazine. He won second prize in the Sentinel Literary Quarterly competition and was published in their Oct-Dec 2013 magazine. He has also won prizes awarded by The Page Is Printed, Fire River Poets, the Wakefield Red Shed and Nottingham Poetry Society and been published by Earlyworks Press, Strong Verse and Southport Fringe Poetry. If you Google Bill Lythgoe poems you can read some of his work.