D -DAY JUNE 6th 1944
I went to view the battlefields of Operation Overlord,
Fifty miles of coastline from Utah Beach to Sword,
To gain a hold in Normandy, D- Day was the key,
A step to free all Europe and beat Hitler’s Germany.
We marshalled all our forces after well-honed drills,
Comprising all resources with their special skills,
Twelve thousand allied air planes, three million men and
Land and sea and airmen determined to endure.
A convoy of six thousand, steamed across the sea,
From warships to assault craft, burgees flying free,
While our Paratroopers, jumped to hold the flanks,
Naval gunfire supported all the ranks.
Resistance here was mighty strong through the hostile surf,
They fought and strived side by side to gain the foreign turf,
There are many tales of bravery and yarns of daring do,
Bad luck or just good fortune - plus error factors too.
Steaming through old minefields, making life quite fraught,
Mulberries were towed across to make a discharge port,
For berthing of the liberty ships - seven at a
While Operation Pluto was the laying of pipeline.
The planning and arranging a monumental slog,
This final push to victory a mortal heavy job,
Supplies proceeding quickly - another fine endeavour,
there was a setback, provided by the weather.
This Normandy invasion was the biggest undertaken,
Embarked upon with allies - confidence unshaken,
I paid respect with colleagues at the wonder of the plan,
And the acts
of courage displayed by every man.
Paid homage in the graveyards as I took my tribute strolls,
Faced the plaque at Arromanches for Merchant Navy souls,
We will not forget them - history points the truth,
On the altar
of our freedom brave men gave their youth.
J.S.Earl April `04