Trenches, endless boundaried miles,
framed a perfect Nomanneslond,
unpeopled at a glance, far specked
with hints of them once thrived with smiles,
now rest in some worst imaginings,
annihilation’s purity, envied by the hottest
blind-foul of hell, a landing ground
of starved Raven-feeders and worm.
The stilled oil slicked with battle-blood,
bone-splinter, foamy mouths agog,
half-prayers spoken in haste, retched
and finished in mud-claw and filth.
These are the killing grounds we spread
on the once white sand of Newlands found.
From first boot-drop, to red sundown,
we cast our fear-will on all we met.
What we left were flamed out crusts
of frames of monasteries and temples,
visiting fire-torch and hammered mace,
gate-crushing and felling the high walls,
razing all we happened upon, all men
and beast tossed to shallowed trenches
and met with metal-soaking, all spirits
body-blood mingled and put to flame.