Bordeaux Bay

Bordeaux Bay
Bordeaux Bay by Guernsey-based artist Tony Taylor

Sunday, 8 November 2015


Around the time of Remembrance Day, I’m featuring poems relating to the Great War 1914 -1918. 
Today’s is based on the reported events during a brief cessation of hostilities at Christmas 1914. 
Interestingly, the retailer, Sainsbury's, chose to use a dramatised version of the football match in their Christmas advertising campaign last year.


Out of the trenches stepped one man,
a truce flag held above his head,
then from the other side was waved
a cloth and word was quickly spread.

From blackened ground, like seeds, they grew
to cover those disputed lands:
a khaki crop mingled with grey,
cautious at first, then shaking hands.

Gifts were exchanged, tobacco, smiles.
Creased photographs were shyly shown.
Then, from a trench that frosty day,
a leather soccer ball was thrown.

The goalposts were four bayonets.
A match was played in friendly style
by muddy boys, for boys they were.
War was forgotten for a while.

 Click here to see the Sainsbury's ad.


  1. Great poem Richard, you hit the nail on the head when you said "for boys they were."

  2. Thank you, John. I read this one at the local Open Mic on Monday past and it was well received. In St Peter Port today (11th) at 11am people stopped what they were doing and stood still for the two-minute silence. It was a poignant moment that confirmed, yet again, that those brave men have not been forgotten.