Future Leaders – Our Nation’s Proud Torch Burns Bright

This poem was prompted by visits to schools during ANZAC services in FNQ where young Aussies do all of us proud… 

Our Nation’s Proud Torch Burns Bright

A crowded sea of faces in the school hall

A choir reaches out to them with sweet call

Disciplined youth bursting with innocence of life

Honoring those from yesterday who gave all in times of strife 

The deeds of the fallen spoken with deep pride

They who had stepped forward as one, to serve, side by side

Now ghostly shadows are dancing to and fro among the class 

Can they be the men and women we honour from the past?

I told these scholars of the dreams all soldiers did share 

To be home with loved ones and peaceful bliss every-where 

A happy precious free way of life for those yet to be born. 

Surely the silence of the guns would signal a bright new dawn?

This audience will be our leaders in time to come

No matter who or where, they will always be united as one

Many will be parents and teach their young, our values of life

To tell them of past sacrifice during Mar’s terrible strife

In this very hall, I saw familiar images of those lost in war 

Smiling, dreaming, eager and a love of life to the very core

Today’s students are of the same ilk and our nation will stay strong

They too understand our way of life and what is right from wrong

Suddenly I was looking into yesterday and felt the bursting pride

For they are you and you are them, all marching side by side

Your sacrifice was not in vain and dreams surely did come true

Today’s proud and freedom loving youth are forever you, true blue  

George Mansford © April 2017


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