Why do I seem to know you,
see your image in my mind,
having only these few lines
inked in fine Italian hand;

see you sat silently on your bunk
cold in a concrete dormitory
in Henllan’s prison camp
thumbing over again old photographs,
hungry for your woman’s touch
aching to hold your children to your heart
to see your mother’s face again
your father welcoming your train.

No news of them for too long a time
what hope you had draining away
bending your broad back
hollowing your eyes.

Beyond the broken iron gate and tunnel trees
in the abandoned graveyard
we searched for your name on tilted stones
among the tussock grass;
the agony you must have felt, that day
you learned that they had died two years before,
chilling us down fifty years of peace.

Did they mark the graves of suicides of war?


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