A contemporary war song

  1. Five-and-seventy years have swiftly flown

since V. E. Day when World War II was over

in Europe. Terns and gulls still swoop to keep

bluebirds off those chalky cliffs of Dover.


  1. Nazi aircraft ceased thence to molest

the security of this favoured island nation;

barrage balloons and searchlights disappeared

from skies above our blissful habitation.


  1. With ugly, clumsy gas-masks out of fashion,

now flimsy facial masks are so ‘in vogue’,

‘cos World War III against coronavirus

is sending young and aged to the morgue.


  1. Each night’s total blackout meant their airmen

would have to guess the targets for their bombs,

while we were underground in air-raid shelters,

sirens having kept us from our tombs.


  1. In present times we just self-isolate

at home with old war films and bulletins!

The R.A.F. is helpless in this fight –

the airborne virus fears no ack-ack guns.


  1. Food rationing meant frequent ‘links-and-tatties’,

the banana a mere pre-war memory,

yet Italian fish-and-chips were all the rage –

a poke in the eye for Aye-Tye Mussolini!


  1. Our beaches were barbed-wired as gun defences;

for seaside hols we’d have to wait a while.

Instead we’d play shellac on gramophones

of Vera’s famous song – Auf Wiedersehen!


  1. As we wait until this virus spends itself,

or science labs produce an antidote,

like Job let’s wear that armour of endurance.

So, praise the Lord and don faith’s trusted coat.


Hugh Thompson

(On V. E. Day’s 75th anniversary – at the prompting of his daughter Fiona)

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