By 16th July 2016December 9th, 2019No Comments

In the Belgian town of “Wipers”

We were all held down by snipers

The Germans were dug in along the road

A bullet then hit Ivor

Our leading lorry driver

And the truck had overturned and lost its load.

Right away our Q.M.S.

Sent a squad to clear the mess

And organised a section strength patrol

A sergeant at the head

With me and Joe and Ted

And a runner, who was my pal Emrys Cole.

Sergeant Roberts took the flank

And sent me up the bank

To see if I could spot the German guns

When I’d crawled up to the top

My eyes began to pop

I’d never seen so many bleeding Huns.

There were Germans by the score

With officers galore

Their boss looked though he’d just come from the Ritz

I chose a number nine

And lobbed it down their line

A group of them were blown to bloody bits.

Their guns then turned my way

And I thought it daft to stay

So I scrambled quickly down my little hill

Then our Sergeant quarter bloke

Smiled and offered me a smoke

He thought that I’d put paid to Kaiser Bill.

We spent that night “Stood To”

Overhead the shrapnel flew

Our rations were sent up along the line

I put on my comfort woolly

And as we scoffed our tin of bully

Sergeant Roberts shared his flask of Belgian wine.

Then the night was torn asunder

By a noise like mighty thunder

Fire shells lit up the darkened sky

A shard of red hot steel

Hit Dai Thomas in the heel

All Ypres would have heard his dreadful cry.

Our C.O. Major French

Made his way along the trench

He ordered everyone to “Fix their spikes”

And gather at the stairs

Which we were to climb in pairs

The next command would come from Captain Sykes.

When at last the whistle blew

I raced up with “13” Pugh

Who grinned and said “Let’s go and get them Taff”

The Jerries held their fire

‘Til we reached the bloody wire

Then the bullets flew around us just like chaff.

There were bodies in the mud

Boots and puttees soaked in blood

I’d never witnessed anything so violent

But Sergeant Major Dade

Launched a sodding great grenade

And all at once the German gun fell silent.

We went forward then apace

And soon we reached the place

Where the ruddy boche had held our mob to ransom

The gunners who had fired

Were very much expired

Believe you me they didn’t look too handsome.

The advance was going well

So we marched to Peelcapelle

Which stands a few miles west of Passchendaele

The battalion was stood down

On the outskirts of the town

That night I had a glass of Belgian ale.

Alan Parry-Booth

Author Alan Parry-Booth

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