One paragraph for all the lost bodies,
somewhere still beneath dirt and grass
and the slow trundle of grazing cattle
meandering, one fence line to another.
Musket balls get plucked up on odd days,
rolled across a palm like a marble,
dropped into a Tupperware tub,
they outlasted the bones and flesh.
A field with five hundred years to forget
yet the calf gets sick with lead
loses its eyesight to a pellet
from a gun fired half a century before.
History reaches past its paragraph
of three thousand nameless men.
Another misery of litter
leftover once the war was done.
Following tonight’s theme of smoke and mirrors, and feeling like the older you get, the less you actually know, I started thinking about how we learn about the history of warfare in schools. There’s a disconnect between the modern day and its wars, and battles such as the one at Bloor Heath* in Staffordshire where around three thousand men are thought to have died in the fighting.
It’s easy to look at these historic events and pick apart the motivations, and the mistakes that were made. However, when dealing with similar situations in more modern settings, the issue can often seem clouded.
I’m left to wonder what will be written five hundred years from now about the current wars being fought and the empires being built.
*The Battle of Blore Heath was part of the Wars of the Roses. I’ve been debating getting back into writing some historic posts so if you’d be interested in knowing more I’d love to hear from you in the comments below. Would it be odd to re-introduce history posts onto the site?