Jump to content
The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

May MGWAT (Newbies welcome)


Ozzie
 Share

Recommended Posts

Head says go with a battle, heart says go with something that touched the men.

Here is what won.

I'd like to put forward that the May topic be:

Canine, Feline, Equine and others, that helped the soldiers in the Great War

And to the newcomers, please post something, everyone likes to see new work.

Art, poetry, prose, whatever!!![/size]

Cheers

Kim

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Nice topic but I still can't draw!!!!!

I'll see what I can do, haven't had anything for a while.

Mandy

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've tried and tried, but I'm afraid there are no animals I am capable of drawing.

So for this topic I'm going to include a different entry, its' called "Twist in the Tail"

......."Don't look now, old chum" the grizzled Corporal said and crouched down beside him,

cradling his head. Speaking softly, comforting, his voice trying not to crack firmly yet

gently he held his head to keep him on this back. The awful sight of the gaping wound

struck him like a fist, like the pieces of shell that had rent the air just seconds ago and left

it's mark on the broken body now laid at his feet, beyond all repair.

" Don't look now...shhh...don't get up...I'll not abandon you"

In truth, he couldn't, as he looked into those pain wracked eyes. He couldn't just leave

it wouldn't be right. Moved close to tears, his mind cast back as he spoke soothingly,

still trying to stop King getting up or thrashing about. Saying something, anything it

didn't matter it was the tone, not the words right now.

"Remember when we met in the autumn of '14 ? At training camp when we were all

ready for the "Big Adventure"........ some adventure....

Since then I've seen Foster sniped at Plugstreet ( at least he went quick ), Thomas

blown to bits in a barrage at Ypres ( it was an overshoot- he was on ration party

approaching the lines ), Stevens went, in a trench raid on the Somme ( he never

came back, we found out the wire was uncut...but we were wrong-HQ told us so ! )

We were all thats left you and me.... all thats left."

The deaths of the others had never affected him like this, he thought he was tough, hard

insensitive. Death became such a part of you, a hazard of the job, men you knew went

west all of the time. But this was different ! His one true friend...it was so....cruel.

As he looked into those wide eyes, almost pleading, pain scarred, the face that would

never speak, he knew in his heart what he must do. This loyal trusting friend was worth

that much, however hard he must just do this duty, but it saddened him almost to the

point of despair.

Wait...groping in his pocket he found, as if by act of god, one last thing he could give.

A piece of barley sugar... how King liked barley sugar...he pressed it gently between

lips eager for the sweet taste, past teeth that moments before were in a rictus of pain.

King looked almost content as he chewed the sweet confection, almost as Jones

remembered the old boy. One more piece and then as King ate, (for it could do no harm,

it was too late ) he placed the muzzle of his rifle square between those eyes.

He couldn't look ( strangely, he did not hear the sound ) but he felt the shock travel up his

arm as the recoil hit.

As Kings's body lay, released from this world, from suffering, from armies and war, he

walked away unable to look back. Down the track he found a dump and an abandoned

can of petrol ( was it abandoned, he no longer cared ? ). He removed the harness and

saddle ( they could be used again...the old ways of thrift never left...waste not want

not his mother had always said ) and carefully poured petrol over the horse and still not

looking into King's face, set light to the body. No local butcher was going to profit from

this day, the thought would have been too much.

Then he left, not looking back, with a heavy heart and tears streaming down his

stubbled cheeks. No man had ever been such a friend, so trusting, so dependant

so close to Jones, as this...his King...a Horse.

Many years later, every armistice day, when Jones stood to attention at the local war

memorial and read the names of those who had paid the price, his mind cast back

and memories flooded home. He read the names Foster, Stevens, Thomas, his own

cousin George Jones and felt a mixture of pride and deep loss. One thing though,

part of him (a larger part than he cared to admit), longed to take a chisel and add

another name to the memorial.....KING...

Spike

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Spike,

that was so moving, a tear in my eye, that came from the soul, how many of the men who lost thier beloved steed could have done that? the last act of love! Beautiful.

Mandy

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Oh, Spike. That is a wonderful piece. I'm crying. You brought home so well,

It was not only the men, that they remembered in later years.

Kim

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Chien De Guerre ... circa 1917 Nivelle Offensive. This one (like the German lancer and his horse in gas masks) always sends a shiver down my spine.

post-1582-1147521815.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As you said Des. Sent a shiver down mine too.

Mandy

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Okay, here is my submittal.

The subject is Major Francesco Barracca, highest scoring Italian ace of the Great War. Baracca marked his aircraft with his own personal emblem - "Il Cavallino Rampante". Baracca and his prancing stallion not only became heroes to the Iatlian people, but also symbols of hope and inspiration.

In the years following WW1 a young Italian named Enzo Ferrari decided to form his own race team. After an early success he wrote: "In 1923, when I won the first Savio race held in Ravenna, I met Count Enrico Baracca, the pilot's father, and subsequently his mother, Countess Paolina. One day she said to me, ‘Ferrari, why don't you put my son's prancing horse on your cars? It will bring you luck." Even today, the Prancing Horse Logo of Ferrari and Francesco Baracca is known worldwide a as a symbol of precision, performance and elegance.

Russ

post-11267-1147539553.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks Russell, great picture and fantastic story... you learn something new every day!

Regards,

Neil

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Oh I hope she doe's read these when your out!

LOL

Mandy

Link to comment
Share on other sites

And we are only half way through.

Mandy, still working on it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ok, so I can't draw, but I feel I cannot miss the opportunity of presenting a picture. I have never managed to either load a photo onto the forum or provide a link, so this is hit and hope.

This is my favourite war picture, and is completely appropriate. Hopefully there is a link to ithere

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Flippin' heck! It actually worked!

I saw this picture in an old furniture/antique establishment, and was transfixed. It was the most profoundly sad picture I had seen and was compelled to buy it. It was a faded print, in a tatty frame, so I'm sure it wasn't worth the £20 I paid for it. But it has been hung on my bedroom wall ever since (17 years) and I'd hate to be without it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have always thought that Matania`s "Goodbye Old Man" is one of the saddest illustrations made...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ok, so I can't draw, but I feel I cannot miss the opportunity of presenting a picture. I have never managed to either load a photo onto the forum or provide a link, so this is hit and hope.

This is my favourite war picture, and is completely appropriate. Hopefully there is a link to ithere

a great picture, I've seen it before, very sad...... :unsure::(

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is my favourite war picture, and is completely appropriate. Hopefully there is a link to ithere

Thankyou!!! I came across this some time ago and lost the link. It is a picture that speaks a thousand words.

Heart rendering.

Regards

Kim

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The black dog padded softly along the road, oblivious to the wreckage that lay alongside the torn and pitted thoroughfare. His nose to the ground, he paused every now and then to raise his muzzle to sniff the putrid air.

His master had been this way. He could smell his scent.

The dog had no human understanding of the war that raged about him. He knew that a whizzing sound meant thunder would follow, and pieces of earth would fly. He knew the smell of blood, and the cries of men. The dank cloying aroma of mud meant that his coat would become clogged and heavy, and often he would be cold.

His memories of a sunny field to run in with his litter mates had faded. All he knew, was that men had come for him, and taken him to a place where there were many humans, where he had been trained to run from one post to another, earning a pat when he did so correctly, a growl when he made a mistake.

He knew nothing of the papers he carried in a small metal cylinder attached to his collar. He had no idea of why men shoved a dark mask over his head, when whistles blew and the men yelled, “Gas.”

Now, all the dog wanted, was to find the man who fed him, who stroked his head when the deafening noise rose to a crescendo, and who gave him his daily game of “Go to HQ, Blackie.”

The thunder came again, but this time a burning pain came with it. The dog yelped as he felt a searing crack in his hock. He dragged his rump along the ground to relieve the pain, but it did not go away. He ran, trying to escape the agony, but his left hind leg hung useless, and although nature allowed him to run on three legs, he soon grew tired.

The pain receded gradually. So long as he did not try to sit down, but stayed standing, the pain was bearable. Bearable as an animal accepts pain.

The scent of his master came anew, stronger. He put his nose to the ground and slowly weaved back and forth across the road, until the scent faded. He backtracked, sliding down the side of an embankment, the rough ground jerking his leg, causing the pain to rise again. He stopped, he stood panting, his tongue lolling out of his mouth. He raised his nose again, the scent sharper and to the right.

The dog made his way through the torn and bloody bodies of the mules, still harnessed to the wrecked wagon. Stepping around the shattered bodies of men, he stopped suddenly, his nose drawn to a sodden lump of khaki.

The dog bent his chest to the ground, his one good hind leg balancing him, as he crawled forward, soft whimpers rising in his throat. Reaching what was left of his master, the dog licked the dead man’s face, willing him to rise, and pat him once again. He lay his head upon the remains of his master’s chest. The dog was confused, but the smell of death gradually permeated his brain, and in the way of his ancestors, he raised his nose to the sky. He howled his lament for his lost master, for his friend, in the ancient way of his kind.

Kim

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...