Anzac Day 2010

April 25, 2010 at 6:01 am | Posted in writing | 10 Comments
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1.

Corporeal Squires! Take this latest report to the troops and broadcast the response!
Yes sir! May I read it first?
Of course not, it is highly classified. But General Costello will be here soon and he wants it done.
Yes Sir!  Can’t he do it himself? I’m a bit busy getting shot at.
Squires to the troops:
Good news people. The working class male has been examined and he is not necessarily evil. (General hurrahs)

2.

The working class male, cannon fodder, always has been, he says, at the docks she was wearing, as the zzip takes off the top of his head. Milne Bay, 25 August 1942.

3.

Two old blokes in the smoking section discussing salary caps and the football. Two beautiful young European tourists walk by. Just for a moment, the conversation stops, eyes flicker. It is an instinct and it is enticed. Their wives return. He  kisses her on the cheek and the other, older, a veteran, his hand moves slightly, brushes hers.

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  1. Today is Anzac Day in Australia. Like Remembrance Day and Veteran’s Day, we remember the soldiers and their sacrifice.

  2. And besides all, they are men. Fabulous tribute, Paul.
    Yes indeed. Thankyou, Narnie.

  3. A few years ago, my friend Liz, who had worked behind the bar at the RSL for 5 years, downstairs signing us in on Anzac day after the march, signs her name, then looks at the form and raises her head and says “Oh, the date. What day is it today?”

    A general outraged buzz of old diggers and their families.

    Oh The Shame!!
    I can imagine. It’s nearly time for beer and two-up at the bowls club.

  4. Have a drink for me to celebrate the brave lads, living and dead, who did the fighting. Cheers.
    I shall, F.G. More than one. The fighting continues for some reason I cannot fathom and the dying does too. And it is the same people doing both as it always has been. Which reminds of one of the most beautiful pieces of writing I have ever read…
    Gallipoli -Inscription on the War Memorial at Anzac Cove
    “Those heroes that shed their blood and lost their lives…
    You are now living in the soil of a friendly country. Therefore rest in peace. There is no difference between the Johnnies and the Mehmets to us where they lie side by side here in this country of ours…
    You, the mothers, who sent their sons from faraway countries wipe away your tears; your sons are now lying in our bosom and are in peace, after having lost their lives on this land they have become our sons as well.”
    Mustafa Kemal Ataturk 1934

  5. Great tribute Paul, and thanks for the supportive comment.
    I meant it, Cocoyea. That is the most publishable thing I’ve read in bloggoland for ages. You should start looking now.

  6. This is the type of tribute I like the best. And your Mustafa Kemal Ataturk quote sums it up – thanks for that.
    You’re welcome, Gabrielle.

  7. ‘General Costello wants it done’. Perfect and precise reference to a generally accepted historical role of capitalism, though I suspect that any of the possible-world ruling orders will do. I do adore the apparent socialism characterised in your third part, Paul. A difficult subject – yes. All due respect.
    Thanks, Brad. Any ruling order will do, I agree.

  8. I am still reeling from the horror of Catherine*Deveney’s anti-ANZAC Day rants on Twitter.

    She must never have watched Blackadder in the trenches.
    I managed to avoid all the ant-Anzac Day rants this year, much to my relief. Remembering the horror of war is an important part of avoiding it in the future.

  9. A fine way of honoring the soldiers — with story and life.
    Honour, it’s a fascinating concept, much missing in modern life, both as a verb and a noun, I think, Aletha.

  10. Awesome, Paul – you have such a great control of narrative – love the snapshot feel too
    Thanks, Ashley. I don’t particularly feel like I have great control of anything at the moment, so your comment is much appreciated.


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