Broken Families This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

October 1, 2009
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A soldier, a mother, a brother, a son,
A bloodthirsty war which will never be won,
A father, a sister, a daughter, a friend,
The war ridden country they were forced to defend.


A culture of colours, the smells on the streets,
The beat of the drum, the tired stamping feet,
Walking on regardless, death within their sight,
No reason for defeat, no reason for this fight.

A soldier is exhausted; his eyes drift off to sleep,
He dreams of his own family, as they hold their hands and weep,
He knows why they are crying but there’s no way this can end,
The war will never stop until, there’s nothing to defend.

His friend shakes his shoulders, to wake him from his dream,
The silence is broken with a deafening scream,
It could be a mother, a daughter, a wife?
The bang of a gun; ends another person’s life.

A mum awaits the news, of her brave young son,
Fighting for his country, he’s not the only one,
Every boy’s the same, his mother filled with dread,
That one day she will wake to find her son is dead.

The tears roll down her face, as she sits alone once more,
Her heart aches for her husband, and her son out in the war
There’s no way she can save them, prevent them from the pain,
She feels she’s in a draught, with no hope for future rain.

A brother writes a letter, in the hope it will arrive,
At a house, which is not broken and a family all alive,
He tells them that he loves them; he misses them each day,
And as he signs his name, he wishes he could stay.

His knows his family need him, alone they cannot live,
He used to send them money; there is nothing left to give,
His father is so ill, his sister left alone,
She says she wants to fight, within the danger zone.

A son is still fighting, although there’s no way he’ll survive,
A row of bodies by the road, not one is left alive,
His allies are all gone; his friends have left him too,
A thousand dreams forgotten, no hope left to pursue.

He starts to write a letter, but he never signs his name,
Instead he lifts a crumpled photo, in a broken frame,
He does not want to hurt them; he doesn’t think they’ll cope,
That night he died alone, without fear yet without hope.

A father is just too old, to fight the war himself,
He’s forced to stay in bed, worried for his health,
He wants to make a difference, to save somebody’s life,
Instead he lies awake, remembering his wife.

His son is off fighting, he could even be dead,
Yet his father is stuck in this stifling bed,
He used to be so strong, yet now he feels so dumb.
His daughter holds his hand as he waits for death to come.

A sister holds a letter, within her shaking hand,
Just as a dying sailor, with no hope of seeing land,
And as she sees the words, her hands around her head,
She walks the house alone, and hides her pain in bed.

She cries herself to sleep, holds a photo to her heart,
For she had made a promise, that they would never part,
She wraps her arms around her mum, wipes away her tears,
Although she knows these wipe away much quicker than her fears

A daughter wants to fight but there’s no way that she can,
She may be strong and healthy, but she is not a man,
She has been left alone, as her father passed away,
And with her brother gone, she now lives from day to day.

Every day is hard, when she does not know his fate,
She’s scared to write a letter, just in case it’s just too late,
And as she lies in bed, she cannot close her eyes,
For she worries for her brother until the sun will rise.

A friend sees a soldier with a gun in his hand,
He ignores all strict instructions and all strict demands,
The gun is pointed at a man, his hands against a wall,
He would rather die than to see his best friend fall.

A brave soldier, a father, he had to survive,
He would give up on the war if it left this man alive,
And he runs with all his strength, without ever asking why,
Together they had fought, and now together they will die.

A stifling cry, a lost, forgotten soul,
A thousand dead bodies, as the war takes its toll,
On a country where once, people sung on the street,
Now a fallen empire, must deal with its defeat.

So how do you see them, these people who fight?
For our country, our safety and our human rights,
Some are merely soldiers, for whom no one seems to care,
But even in the darkness a friend is always there.

These two broken families are in many ways the same,
They both have lost their loved ones; they both have felt that pain,
They both fight on regardless, for the same futile mission,
And yet despite these similarities, they are each other’s opposition.


A soldier, a mother, a brother, a son,
A bloodthirsty war which can never be won,
A father, a sister, a daughter, a friend,
The war ridden country they were forced to defend.

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