Cool Stuff

Friday, December 24, 2010

Carentan O Carentan

Trees in the old days used to stand
And shape a shady lane
Where lovers wandered hand in hand
Who came from Carentan

This was the shining green canal
where we came two by two
walking at combat-interval
Such trees we never knew

The day was early June, the ground
Was soft and bright with dew
Far away the guns did sound
But here the sky was blue

The sky was blue, but there a smoke
Hung still above the sea
Where ships together spoke
To towns we could not see

Could you have seen us through a glass
You would have said a walk
Of farmers out to turn the grass
Each with his own hay-fork

The watchers in their leopard suits
Waited till it was time
and aimed between the belt and boot
And let the barrel climb

I must lie down at once, there is
A hammer at my knee
And call it death or cowardice
Don't count on again on me

Everything's all right, Mother
Everyone gets the same
At one time or another
It's all in the game

I never strolled, nor ever shall
Down such a leafy lane
I never drank in a canal
Nor ever shall again

There is a whistling in the leaves
And it is not the wind
The twigs are falling from the knives
That cut men to the ground

Tell me, Master-Sergeant
The way to turn and shoot
But the Sergeant's silent
That taught me how to do it

O Captain, show us quickly
Our place upon the map
But the Captain's sickly
And taking a long nap

Lieutenant, what's my duty
My place in the platoon?
He too's a sleeping beauty
Charmed by that strange tune

Caretan O Carentan
Before we met with you
We never lost a man
Or known what death could do

By Louis Simpson

No comments:

Post a Comment