I was frightened, of course, when we took to the air,
I’d never flown over the German Ocean before,
but I was reminded as I looked across to my right
of safety in numbers in this bomber flight.
The Sun was still licking the line of the Norfolk shore
as we wheeled inland toward Coltishall.
We were so many and you just one of The Few,
me at my station by the bomb door
It didn’t take long to win your fight between dogs
then you wheeled left to turn your cannon on us
I was in perfect health, had family and friends
but when my plane hit the trees all that came to an end.
No one survived to answer where was I last seen
only my enemy found me, un-named, not missing
n.b. NaPoWriMo Day Eight prompt: monologue from the grave, after ‘Spoon River Anthology’ by Edgar Lee Masters, Gutenburg eBook. http://www.gutenberg.org/files/1280/1280-h/1280-h.htm#chap137 (Accessed 08/04/2021)
I found the above gravestone in the village cemetery on the outskirts of Scottow village, Norfolk. How, I wonder, does someone die and get buried without being known? The German airmen buried around him were all identified. I thought it a thoughtful touch that he was buried with named graves either side.