Twisted Gut

It was one in the morning when it started, the screaming.

The baleful and inhuman all pervading screaming.

With my nose pressed against the frosty window,

I saw the glow of the Tilly lamp crossing the snow filled yard below.

I saw the vets van arriving,

But I saw no more for a while as my breath iced the window.

The screaming stopped about half past two,  

With the baleful and inhuman roar of the Webley.

I saw the old man taking leave of the vet, hands shaking,

And in the glow of the Tilly lamp, I thought, It was just a thought though,

That he was crying. It just couldn't have been so.  

The men who fought in the Great War just didn't do crying.

They just dropped things when you slammed a door.

In the morning at breakfast the old man wasn't there.

"He's not himself dear,  

Don't go near the stables just yet,

You can help me in the kitchen."

I noticed later that the bay mare wasn't there

One friend less in a lonely childhood.

And I noticed that no one ever mentioned her,

I believe the huntsmen took her away for dog food.

I was glad of one thing though, the screaming had stopped.

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