Tuesday poem: Hoppy
August 13, 2012
One-legged plastic soldier lying on the footpath,
un-mourned victim of sand-pits and tree-houses,
imaginary scratch Iraqs of a childhood’s backyard.
Those battles are not what downed you, left you
bereft on naked concrete (though the single limb
speaks of skirmishes with WMD shears).
No, you lost the fight with years, as your Generals
grew away from you, took to iPods, booze or blogs;
left your moulded games of rigidity behind.
You stand to ever-lasting attention
(or would with one more prop)
but there’s no one to salute or shoot,
and your tall castles of Lego have toppled into bins.
Hoppy leans upon a book now
and recounts the days gone by
like a thousand wounded soldiers in
a thousand wounded bars.
Fodder for the poets; soldiers plastic,
soldiers fleshy, forgotten by their masters
tell such abbreviated tales.
I found a one-legged toy soldier, who can’t stand up, and that inevitably led to poetry.