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THE BROKEN DRUM
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  The leaden sky, lay heavy
On that bleak autumnal day
When the drummer boy was ordered
His battle drum to play.
The reveille that young boy sounded
Roused the soldiers from their sleep,
They made ready for the battle
And the rendezvous they must keep.
The dew lay heavy on their greatcoats,
Their breath vapourised in the air,
Whilst the greyness all around them
Only deepened their despair.
 
  Another day had dawned
In this, the seige of Malacci,
How many more gallant fighting men
Would stumble, fall and die?
That day’s fighting started slowly
With a brief skirmish, here and there,
Then cannon started pounding
The smell of gunpowder, filled the air.
Grapeshot screamed, and tore through living flesh
Cannon ball, did break their ranks.
Bayonet and sabre scythed a bloody way
Through the centre and both flanks.
 
 
The walls of the city, crumbled
Beneath this onslaught of shot and steel
And that proud, bedraggled garrison
Was crushed, beneath the enemy heel.
When the battle sounds had dwindled
And the acrid smoke had cleared,
Both sides began to count the cost
It was more than they had feared.
The victors, although jubilant
Their losses had struck them dumb.
The vanquished had but one soul left
A boy, WITH A BROKEN DRUM.
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Copyright © 2005 David Burt , all rights reserved
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