Old War Blanket


A dark grey blanket of course rough wool following you
It had followed you from the camps on your repatriation

You’d broken out somehow after you’d thirsted and starved enough
making your way to the American lines you laughed about that

Losing your way you said you ended up in the Russian lines instead
You were like skin and bone when you wound your way home at last

The grey blanket covered our beds in those winters of shivering cold
Maybe it’s a good luck charm so you kept something you’d never let go


The blanket’s still following, I can see it hanging on the wash line now
Draped over the bright green plastic wire drying on a hot summers day

Unfurling with each gasp of a warm light wind its heavy wool cloth
Lifting above the bright red Montbretia flowers another legacy of love

Taken with sadness from your mother’s garden at Netherfield Farm
A memento of another kind, another place, we hold such things dearly.