Trafalgar Square

Trafalgar Square

Early morning start, long walk
to catch first train to the ‘smoke’,
steam locomotive at the head,
join the throngs from Aldermaston.

Boys in blue, keeping pace with human tide,
Hey, hey LBJ, how many kids ya kill today.
Home-made banners, proclaim, protest,
Ban the bomb. Stop the war. Yanks go home.

Lions in the square, surrounded, sat upon,
speeches from handheld megaphones,
standing proudly, singing loudly.
We shall overcome, we shall overcome.
Last train home, another two-hour traipse,
before sleeping soundly in familiar beds.

Every hour, explosions, raking bullets,
another part of the city lost to war.
Palls of dust from masonry falls,
piles of rubble where once stood walls.
Lifeless bodies held in sobbing arms,
Cries of pain drowned by missile drones.

Join the line to escape bombardment,
all possessions, tied in a bundle of cloth,
day after day of moving on; no speeches,
no songs. A ragged line, haunted faces,
another night of fitful sleep, unfamiliar places.

Where we going, asks the child,
To a land of safety, a place
of peace, where stone lions
stand sentry in a square.

Peter Kay