If his boots could talk
they would speak of rough ground, of the battlefields of France
long journeys across unknown lands, knee deep in dirty rivers
of worn souls beneath shiny black leather, thick hides encasing swollen feet.
If his boots could talk they would speak of hard winters, nothing but grey smothered air,
Of rationed meat and bread and the blank open pages of diaries,
Mud thick and furrowed, peppered with ammunition shells
Of men falling like leaves on the battlefields.
If his boots could talk they would speak of those quiet moments waiting for the cry
Of that look passed between men of shared fate
Strangers dirtied, bloodied hands fumbling in the darkness,
Ears strained by the squeal of bombs overhead and
the intermittent clacking of gunfire.
If his boots could talk, they would tell of those final moments in the dawn,
when the sun rose over the channel and he thought of home.
The death of one man and the birth of another
If his boots could talk they would speak of his courage
Of his giving his life for us.