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Changing Days

I had arrived
Blue as the little bag,
we used on washing days
An oxygen tent my home
they stared at me so forlorn.

Fighter I was,
the months passed by,
you would see me scream
to catch my Mothers Eye
a bouncing bundle,

Number seven was this joy
Memories from those days
as dreams were shed
Babies can’t recall,
what’s done or said.

Later I recall
the odd time it seems.
Aircraft flying over, not a dream,
must have been “D” day.
Later I reinforced my recall,
saying thank you to one and all.

They fought for my freedom,
when I was young.
Eighteen year old’s,
someone’s son.
The trails in the sky,
as they did their best.

Hollow screams ripping
Gave me a pain in my chest,
that I could only stare.
Places I would go,
as older I grew,
are coming to me
as I write this for you.

I wish you could have seen.
My writing will tell you so,
where as children we would go
Woods, then fields full of hay,
where we could wander each day.

We were held gently by the land.
Many poems, talk of the times
We knew, and felt it was grand.

Walk with me,

I will show you my land.
No concrete did spill into our lives,
just golden grass,
meandering streams.
A beautiful place,
for the children of dreams.

Softly trodden paths,
from ages gone by,
cattle tracks and horses ways,
I remember those days.

Verdant trails,
moss covered tree’s
Where I would wander,
as free as the breeze,
stretched before my eyes.
A quiet beauty in memory seen
My home, it’s always been.

Sounds of war receded,
into a struggle of life for me.
With ration books, orange juice,
the odd little thing for free.
We could have done with more.

“Why”? You say,
“Are you like you are today”?

I will tell you, of other things,
that made me feel this way,
a freedom and love my sway.
The birds would sing each day,
where I grew as a child,
consumed by a tranquil beauty.

Not a touch of greed,
there to hide,
love walked by my side.
Of days when we had fun,
Playing games with everyone,
that dared to come our way.

Battles of our smallish minds,
we would watch, learn, and play
Where perfumes,
sometimes sour,
lovely strong creatures there.

Bird droppings as we ventured out,
to see the owl in his hideout
Should we find his bower.

Then the stench of the milking sheds
cows gave us creamy milk.
Cackling hens gave us their eggs,
though others ended up in a stew.
Building strong bones for me and you.
This was the way of the land.

I walked among the growth there,
the wild flowers, trees, not touched
this taught me to care.
If only you could have been there!

With me, nature’s way,
a life so free, this taught me.
Schooldays came, then faded so.
I joined the military, probably to show,
I could leave my sanctuary.

A part of that world you know.
I didn’t really want to see.
A boy in a man’s world, so hard for me.
Learned to shoot, it was only a card
At the end of a range, holes appeared.
It wouldn’t dawn on me then,
that this was to be a future trend.

People used these weapons so,
killing and mutilating bodies without end.
I drifted safe in disciplined ways.
Thirty came I changed my way.
Freedom to once again blend,
with nature more time to spend.

A joy to my mind no war machines.
This didn’t last I should have seen.
I spent time as a boffin creature.
Working on Choppers, for the future.

This took me to Canadian shores,
My life changed there for ever more,
A spirit bonded itself to mine.
It was here on an evening’s fun
I met a Spirit hidden in someone.
This changed my direction plain to see
A beautiful peace descended on me.
I embraced another world.

This beauty was not to be,
I returned home to family,
They though of a different kind
Had to be the priority in my mind.
So home to fact, just once again.

A wanderlust grabbed my time,
abroad I went with the family mine.
Africa’s mystery, captured me,
in all its changes of life and apathy.
Where people, stayed in their ways.
From year to year a slow decay,
showed many cracks out there.

A part of Apartheid I became,
my training as a youth was to blame,
This for me not toeing the line.
A civilian in a war machine.
Wars were there, I was involved.

Flying machines, in another world.
It was not that hard as you will see,
To all my gentleness was still free.
People around knew of me.
Killing field weapons drew me in,
A family to support, my main thing.
To me it was abstract you see,
it could not touch the child in me.
A job, is a job, this is reality.

Days when memory goes blind
The death of more friends today
A simple mesh fence took them away
A casevac was on that day
The stretcher case to take away
An engineer, my friend you see,
Made the machine safe for them to be

The chopper lifted slowly into the air
Backed a bit nothing was clear.
The fence held it tight they didn’t see
Flames licked them away from me.
The pilot jumped out from his seat
He survived never knew of the heat
Shrinking his, and my friends that day.

More photo’s in the hanger seen
A black band holds their faces serene
No not another horrible dream.
Tonight we will their lives celebrate
Sing the helicopter song, drink to a mate
Who gave all for his fellow men
I hope never to sing that song again.
These were times, things went wrong
You wished that you didn’t belong.

Other times a laugh we had
The Helicopter shot this was sad.
It fell from the sky that wasn’t bad
Ended on the muddy river bank below
With the last turn of its blades
Turned onto its side just so.

Gave me a hell of a job you know
I could have cried, full of mud inside.
Quiet times of chasing the sun
A dagga raid this was fun
A man tried to hide from our ways
Dressed as a woman it didn’t work

Tied to a land rover for a while the jerk
His print dress flying in the breeze
Ladies hat we just had to tease
The burning of the smelly weed
Wafted over us but we paid no heed
Maybe smiled a lot that day.

Dagga smelt and changed us so.
A police van arrived I thought
Well this is for the bad boys
No it was for us. a lovely toy
The back doors spread open wide
A bar and music held inside.

A fire we made in the starlit night
A guitar was played songs sang
Can it get better than this for man.
To retain my gentleness you see,
Harder than any task, given me.

Friends, foes alike they came, then gone,
a pointless strife that carried on.
Fighting for freedom of other men.
Why do we do it, time and time again?
Is there no end to this hate,
just the greed of men?

That sets him against his brother so,
a pointless way but on it goes.
Pictures in the aircraft’s shelter
Of my friends bonded so.
Black borders those that had to go
To know them all by name,
I cry too much it’s not a game.

Theatre of war, what a stupid name.
There death knocks at the door.
I saw him once as he passed me by,
an old man with a scythe held high.
To just take you home, death either way.

A year passed I was home at last.
Machines called me once more.
This time in a peaceful zone,
Land’s frozen far from home.
Canada called to me again

What effect the cold could be,
on our flying machines you see.
Temperature probe’s to test the air,
to see what happens when frozen there.
Pushing the pedal’s of an aircraft control.
In Arctic winds we were soon to know.,
It took two people instead of one,
damn the cold, this is no fun.

But there were, beautiful days
Ice glistening in a bright sun.
More years passed me by,
more military life, I could just cry.
I broke the chain to live again,
Then my family set me free.

Breaking up, not the same you see.
What did they, expect of me.
My inner contacts set me free.
I now chose Spiritual liberty,
A new start old as I was,
a fearful step for one of love.
I can now talk of Spirit things,
built deep inside, sanctuary rings

For all those years they hid.
Directing my life as they did,
I hope I treated them well.
Today as I sit in this chair
Typing words without a care.
Age has captured my mind,
I try not to leave any behind

I send to all that wish to be.
Read my story I hope you’ll say.
I’ve had a lovely life as I am today
Writing of love, muses leave no scars.
The only words that fall from my pen,
are of gentle times, as I was then.

Growing old is so, I am told.
When you reach out, for your cot again.
As a child you came into this world,
then you shall return the same.
Pure and full of love,

Style / type: 
Free verse
Review Request (Intensity): 
I want the raw truth, feel free to knock me on my back
Review Request (Direction): 
How does this theme appeal to you?
Is the internal logic consistent?
Last few words: 
Just a biography
Editing stage: 


I am still working on giving feedback. I am honestly not good at it. Hence, I read poems, but very seldom do I write a feedback. But the feedback below came from my heart after reading your work.

I have no words to say about this work. It's just so thought-provoking. Every line I read is like a scene in a movie. I can see it, feel it - the innocence of youth; a boy in a soldier's uniform. The toys he once played had turned into things men use for slaughter. Gone are the days of ignorance of a child. How do I say this? It's a story of how a boy was forced to be a man and how the war and the transitions of life shaped and changed him - and then, he has found redemption and before he departs this world, leaves behind the story of his life as a legacy. This is simply beautiful.

"Time is a sly one,
In a blink of an eye,
It is gone."

Thank you very much for your Patience in reading this long piece,
It is a autobiography so is rather long, hope you gleaned something from its content, no worries about more comments, I enjoyed your visiy,
Yours Ian..

Give critique to help keep Neopoet great.
Unconditional love to you all.
"Learn to love yourself first"
Yours as always, Ian.T, Sparrow, and Yenti

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