The Missing – by George Mansford

They lie in foreign fields and vast oceans deep
We know not where they sleep
They are the missing from many campaigns
On hallowed cold silent walls we have etched their names
Once precious sweet youth never to be seen again

From outback to urban sprawl, troubled hearts sob and cry
Loved ones in anguish ask the question “Why?”
Mothers cherish smiling youth captured in ageing frames
Widows in restless sleep still dream of him coming home again
Sons and daughters often hear strangers whisper his name
In some dark houses are bedrooms never used and empty chairs
And cluttered attics with sports gear, suits and old footwear

Regardless of time, whatever the war, the need for closure is there
Why not an infant forest to help heal pain so bare?
Such a deserving project if only Canberra would dare
A final farewell for the next of kin and our nation to share
A tree for each warrior to salute the price he gave
So that our way of life for future generations might be saved
Each wooden sentry marks a missing warrior’s proud history

Imagine a forest; a living monument to their glory
A busy chattering wildlife spreading seed for new life
Mid a proud regiment of trees at peace not strife
This would represent the missing from the bloody past
Content now beneath the Southern Cross, their spirits home at last
George Mansford ©March 2012

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