Tag Archives: soldier

Cam again?


I don’t particularly like people who wear camouflage to look cool or tough. I really don’t like those who wear it to pretend they are military or ex-military. Glory seeking bastards.

Heck, I don’t like to wear mine in public if I don’t have a good reason.

I do wear it because you can pick up ex-military and military surplus camo clothes for a fraction of the price of other work clothes, and the military stuff is much tougher. Great for working on the car, gardening, and in my case, hunting rabbits. Let’s face it, DPM camo is designed to make being seen harder… So why wouldn’t I wear it when hunting bunnies?

Anyway… After a morning of rabbiting to help keep the numbers down, stocking my freezer (and stopping the number of cow leg breaking holes being dug in the farmer’s meadow), I like to get a hearty breakfast from the local posh garden centre. A huge breakfast of stacked eggs, bacon, tomatoes, mushrooms, beans, toast and a cup of tea is just the thing to end a hunt and start a day, and this place does a fantastic breakfast with local fresh meats and eggs.

Often there are old folk there, pottering around the bedding plants, looking at the fish in the ponds, buying boiled sweets, and having tea and cake with their remaining elderly friends. Most of them are quiet lovely, although there is always one bitter, entitled old hag who’s outlived her friends and as she no longer works, she goes to cafes and garden centres to complain loudly at the staff about mundane crap, but that’s another story.

On this day, post hunt, I was in good spirits and in need of a dustbin lid sized breakfast platter. I found a seat in the cafe and ordered the ‘mega-breakfast’. It’s not just a clever name – it really is huge.

As the food was brought over to me and placed on my table, an smart tweed dressed elderly man who was sat with his equally well dressed wife, looked over at me as I sat contemplating where to start on my mountainous meal. I noticed he was looking at me, so I looked up and smiled the smile of a person who was on the brink of gorging themselves on one of the finest breakfasts around.

“That’s a heroes breakfast!” he said and smiled.

I nodded back. He wasn’t wrong after all as this was one hell of a challenge, but I was up for it!

I ate the whole lot, ending with me mopping the juices up with my toast and downing the last of my cup of tea. A quick wipe of my beard to avoid any egg faced embarrassment and I got up to leave. As I walked past the old chap’s table I nodded a ‘goodbye’… and he returned my nod with his own nod, and then said softly;

“I’m proud of you son…”

I looked sheepishly at him and gave a single smiling nod, said thank you, and walked away.

Quite bizzare that he’d said that, but it was a huge breakfast and he probably wouldn’t have managed half of it. Still seemed odd that he was proud of me for doing so!

As I walked to the exit it dawned on me what I’d been oblivious too.

I was in full camo, right down to army kit boots. 

He’d thought I was a serving member of our armed forces.

I felt terrible. I didn’t intend to mislead anyone; I hadn’t even thought about it. He was giving me praise for something I hadn’t done – and whereas some bastards dress in military gear just to get that praise, I am not one of them.

I donated some money to the very next ‘Help For Heroes‘ charity that I saw – if anything, just to pay it forward. I didn’t earn his praise, so I felt I had to make amends somehow.


I won’t stop wearing camo; Like I said at the start, I have reasons to wear it… but I shall donate if I ever get genuinely mistaken for a member of our armed forces again (or happen to be passing someone collecting for them).

To Be King

A soldier lay dying on the fields of blood
His past came and haunted him still
For his allies and enemies, they all came about
And upon him they forced for the kill

They’d not seen, as he had, the reasons for war
They’d not heard the rallying cry
They’d just seen the conflict, the maddening fight
And for that, they thought he should die

A country at risk, a queen on the throne
Both sides were so unaware
A traitor, a spy, the one with the knife
A man who had such little care

He saw a country to add to his name
And a queen he could call a prize
Yet he sullied his honour on forbidden fruit
And kept the queen courted with lies

Yet the soldier was told of these traitorous moves
And he felt it burn through to his soul
But he offered a rope to the treasonous wretch
To either hang, or pull free from the hole

The battlefield filled with armies that night
The traitor knew time had run out
‘Though given the means to keep honour intact
The turncoat just started to shout

With no prior to guide them, the armies advanced
As one on the soldier in sight
With his flanks pierced by friends and his chest by his foes
The soldier was losing the fight

“You try to play God” a cry came from the crowd
“You have no course for this fight!”
Yet the soldier stood ground, for he knew the whole tale
And he stood for what he thought right

The Armies fell back, the soldier was down
The battle had drawn to an end
As he lay in the mud and the blood of the scene
The soldier felt left without friend

The soldier just lay there, fading fast
On the cold and hated ground
He looked at the sky and thought of the queen
He’d never even seen her around

He knew of her name and the beauty she held
‘Though the queen knew nothing of him
He knew the armies would think something else
That he wanted to be her King

He knew he should fade back into the night
He surely didn’t want this
He had tried his best to protect the unknown
He hadn’t set out for a kiss

But as stars lit the world, a stranger approached
Through the misted fields of the night
“I give you praise, I give you thanks –
It was for me, that you put up this fight”

The soldier lay stunned, his strength coming back
As the queen drew back into the dark
Unknown to him, unknown to her
There had been a fateful spark

Yet how could a soldier speak freely to a queen
Her beauty for one left him dazed
And how could the queen speak first to him
The answer – a future betrayed

A betrayal of two lives and a the loss of a love
The birth of a new dawn and age
The start of an end with the loss of a friend
The first, though not the last page

The summers went by and the soldier fought on
‘Though he often thought of the queen
His life was now made in the shape of all else
And his past was now but a dream

He had his own troop, and army of one
His life was set on its way
Then the queen he had lost returned to the land
And the sun once more lit his way

Yet time had moved on for the soldier and the queen
The past was set solid in stone
For she had a life, and he had a life
But those lives were not just their own

So the queen and the soldier, together again
But where do they go from here?
She’ll rule her land and take her stand
And the soldier – he’ll always be near.

By Lucas Black – 10th June 2008


I used to write a lot of verse – mainly tilted towards the darker gothic. Now it is more infrequent.

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