The Christmas Truce of 1914--A Poem by Richard Greve
but they already knew that their oh-so-brave leaders
had sent them to the slaughter, with cheering crowds, no less.
Blind and dumb a continent goes mad with lust-for-war disease.
In the muddy holes they dug,
lice crawling under caps, and coughing from cold,
they stopped the madness for a few days respite,
to celebrate the prince of peace that their royal
leaders gave lipservice to on Sunday morning.
They sang some songs.
drank a soothing drug they shared
to find a little peace.
They played some ball (they were so young)
and went back to muddy holes to sleep
a final silent night.
It could not last,
their leaders, in their cozy beds, would make sure of that.
For four more years the slaughter reigned
and holes were dug in rows for them,
for their eternal sunless beds,
in the lonely fields of France that don't remember