March 25

Thomas Begins to Write…

Dear Mother by Mark JamesBarely able to hold the pencil in his frozen muddy fingers, Thomas started to etch the words on the dirty soggy paper that he had been storing for months in his uniform. The pencil was small and worn, the nib crudely shaved to a point with a small pocket knife that he carried.

Remembering how his handwriting use to flow across the page in small neat lines and swirls, the frustration of struggling to finish the first few words played on his mind.

Eyes that had seen pain and inhuman amounts of suffering, filled with a salty glaze as he began to try to recall them.

Taking a second to compose himself, Thomas looked up at the clay filled gully that had been his home for what seemed forever, but in fact had only been a few months. He could see his fellow soldiers lying on the thinnest planks of wood, helmets rested over their eyes to block out the drizzling rain. Others sat in puddles on the ground talking to each other, seemingly nonchalant of the conditions they lived in. After everything they’d experienced and done since arriving in the hell hole, no one seemed to care about feeling a little cold, they could only focus on what was happening now.

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