of World War Two in Seven Verses
By Griffin Turton
the year nineteen thirty nine
Of good intent there is no sign,
Hitler’s panzers invade Poland, no peace in their time.
English children onto the Pied Piper’s trains climb,
Then Britain and France
on Germany declare war
And the Soviets finish off Poland via the back door.
In October a U-boat sinks the Royal Oak at Scapa Flow,
the Soviets attack Finland, a Winter War in the snow,
Whilst off the coast of South
America, the Battle of the River Plate
Causes the Graf Spee to be scuttled as the Royal
In the year nineteen
There is no Phony War at sea; the Battle of the Atlantic is key,
Denmark is attacked by Germany and quickly overrun
in Norway their victory is harder won.
On May tenth the Low Countries are invaded
and a trap is set
And Churchill is made Prime Minister, promising 'blood,
toil, tears and sweat',
Then the trap is sprung and from the Ardennes,
Hitler’s Panzers appear,
Cut off at Dunkirk, small boats help the British Expeditionary
Force to disappear.
Now Mussolini declares war, besieging Malta and attacking France
in the rear,
France makes peace but the future of their fleet is Churchill’s
So the Royal Navy attack French ships in Africa
in return the ‘Vichy French’ bomb Gibraltar.
Above England with Spitfires
and Hurricanes the Battle of Britain is won,
Then there is the Blitz and over British
cities bombs fall by the tonne,
“London can take it’’, Americans
are told and for an alliance Churchill calls
But as the year ends, thick dark smoke
gathers around St. Pauls.
the year nineteen forty one,
The Western Desert Force fights the Italians
under the desert sun
And in a night off Cape Matapan, the Italians, the Royal Navy
Then the Desert Fox arrives and the desert force is on the run
And for the Australians the Siege of Tobruk has begun,
May the Bismarck sinks the Hood but three days later it’s course too is run.
in Crete the British suffer another grievous defeat,
Though it is a Pyrrhic victory
for the German airborne elite,
For now Hitler’s Barbarossa begins in the June
And though the Soviets survive they suffer terribly in their retreat.
Then at prayers in Pearl Harbour, with the Rising Sun,
Japanese deeds are done,
Now the Sino-Japanese war and the European war are one.
In the year nineteen
The Americans are now in the war too
the U-boats are happy again freely sinking the merchant fleet,
And in Singapore the
British Empire suffers it’s worst ever defeat.
The Japanese showing no mercy,
both civilians and POWs they badly treat,
Whilst the Nazis with their Death Camps are
aiming to kill all the Jews.
A commando raid on St Nazaire, supplies rare and much
needed good news
And then in the Pacific during the Battle of Midway the US navy aircrews,
Outnumbered by the Japanese, snatch a crushing and fiery victory.
despite desert defeats, convoy PQ17 and disaster at Dieppe, in this history,
now turns. Slowly at first at Stalingrad and in the Guadalcanal Campaign
But then Monty
and the 8th Army are finally victorious at El Alemein
And shortly after the Allied
Torch lands in North Africa like a flame.
the year nineteen forty three,
Frozen in Stalingrad the doomed German 6th
Army cannot break free,
Whilst in Casablanca, Roosevelt demands unconditional surrender!
In the Atlantic, Ultra and Liberators force the Wolfpacks under
cut off in Tunisia, the Axis Army finally has to surrender.
blow the Möhne and Eder dams asunder,
havoc in the Ruhr and causing the Germans to reel
And then the Allies take Sicily,
and then Italy is invaded and brought to heel.
While the German Citadel falls at Kursk
and German cities go up in flames,
In England GI’s invade with candy bars and
nylons, calling women dames
And in the Pacific on the Gilbert Islands so very far,
The US Marines add to their history the name Tarawa.
In the year nineteen forty four,
Monte Cassino, Texans, Indians, Gurkhas, Kiwis, the casualties soar,
it is ‘Big Week’ and into the Luftwaffe, Mustangs roar,
The Japanese try
to enter India but the Fourteenth Army slam the door.
French and Polish troops outflank
the Germans and the Gustav Line is no more
And the US Fifth Army finally breaks out
through Anzio to liberate Rome.
Then the next night six gliders fly out from
Tarrant Rushton aerodrome,
With an airborne army flying to Normandy, to seize bridges
and prepare the way,
So Americans, British and Canadians can storm ashore, on this
their longest day.
In reply the Germans launch flying bombs, death in a new modern
On Saipan Seabees construct runways to bomb Japan, now not so far away,
And with the Soviet strategic offensive another German army is swept away.
the allies breakout, Paris, Brussels and Antwerp are soon liberated
But at Arnhem many
British paratroopers lie dead, a bridge too far it is said.
Then victory at Walcheren
and the Port of Antwerp is open in a trice,
Then in desperation Hitler has one last
roll of the dice,
And in the Battle of the Bulge many pay the ultimate
In the year nineteen forty five,
is dying and will not long survive,
But still to Yalta he goes for the last meeting
of the big three,
To discuss the fate of nations and how the post war world will be,
Empowered by the Red Army’s advances, Stalin bends them to his will
through the grand alliance runs a chill.
For the US Marines fighting on Iwo Jima, the
cost is dear,
In the west the allies cross the Rhine and now their way is clear,
Then the Soviets advance into Austria and it is soon goodnight Vienna,
in Italy the Eighth Army spring offensive forces the gap at Argenta.
Army captures Rangoon and in Burma the Japanese are defeated,
The Soviets storm into
Berlin and Hitler in his bunker shoots himself in the head.
The Germans surrender but
on Okinawa and in the Philippines the war goes on,
As B29s firebomb Japanese cities
and Kamikaze pilots try to save the Rising Sun, Then an atomic bomb is dropped on Hiroshima followed by another on Nagasaki
And so the Japanese surrender finally.
With sixty million
dead and maybe many more,
For our future, we should learn and lessons draw,
From this our world’s most destructive war.