Snow flakes….

Gently fall and melt

Crossing from this realm

It’s beautiful

No pity please

Valhalla awaits

Read my name

On granite walls

Listen for a soldier coming home

 On a name whispered in the wind

Across the Glen

Remember us….

We lived we loved

We fell….

We will always be





©  Tony McNally

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All that glitters is not gold

All that glitters is not gold

Just like enemy tracer rounds

They can hypnotise you as they fly

Seeming to have no sound

Ours are green there’s are yellow

They bounce of rocks and disappear

Writing their name in the black sky

They can fill a soldier with fear

Your shoulder ache as you blast away

Flashes illuminating your mates

Sustained fire to the enemy front

Sending your foe to their fate

Back home in Blighty on Bonfire night

Sends you back thirty years to that hill

Where all that glittered was not gold

Not then for fun more to kill.


© Tony McNally

The Criac





Subdued mumbled laughter

Cigarettes blinking like fireflies

Men together

Hot tea sipped

Tales of romance


Eyes flicking in the mist

Weapons held close

Ammo checked

Completely in the moment

At ease with each other

Random chat



More sex

No eye contact

Macho men


For history

Last drink of tea

Fag butts crushed underfoot

All at once

They turn

Like the tide

“Listen Inn.”


Then it began.



 © Tony McNally

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The Lads

A sea of burning foaming waves

Black sky suddenly alight with Flames

Quiet mountains

Now engulfed in violence

Screams echo between the rocks

Heroic deeds

Life taken in an instance

A brother falls

Your heart torn out

Onwards you go

Into the pages of history

Just survive this hell

No thoughts of home

Slam home another magazine

Cordite burns your nostrils

Meaning your still of this earth

To move towards a wall of bullets


Because you’re a soldier

More fear of failing your comrades

Than dying for your Regiment

Crack thump


Then up

One more bound

I will survive

The dawn light

Will see me home

The class of 82.


© Tony McNally

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Old Young Men

I saw you smile

But it didn’t hide the fear in your eyes

Checking our weapons again

No nasty surprise

Thumbs up and you were gone

In the mist the chopper did rise

Will we meet again?

Nobody knows

Then it was my turn

Off to War we go

Both of us young men

A soldier no doubt

This was our moment

In the Chopper I shout

“If I die in a combat Zone

Box me up and send me home”

When the guns fell silent

We met again

Not recognising each other

As bearded skinny old men

Our smiles had gone

A different look in our eyes

No hugs or handshakes

Nervously still staring at the skies

We did our duty

Made it through

Two young old men

The class of 82.




 © Tony McNally

Author's Notes/Comments: 

During the Falklands War I left my best mate and went to War, at the end of the fighting we both met up again in the Capital Stanley, we were filthy bearded and had lost so much weight we didn’t recognise each other. 

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The Schizophrenia of War.

The disgustingly beautiful soldiering
The abhorrently peaceful peace
The exhilarating intoxicating Fire fight
The stomach churning smell of the deceased
The loneliness of being back home
The need to be back with your mates
The buzz of being paid to kill
The grin on a dead soldiers face
The guilt of being a survivor 
The odd need to do it all again
The faces of men you would die for
The comrades who would never give in
The old man I've become please forgive me
The ones that died still in their teens
The soldiers now smiling in Valhalla 
The ones I will see tonight in my dreams

© Tony McNally



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Another tin of lager


Three letters

As a young soldiers

Modern day Gladiators

We coveted

These three letters

Watching Vietnam War films

Clutching a tin of lager

We blurred the cinematic bloodshed

WAR……Its here

Hip Hip Hooray

Willingly we went  

More green grist to the mill

Crack open another tinny

We are fucking Supermen




 © Tony McNally

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It was a matter of millimetres

When I hit the ground 

I got a mouthful of sheep shit

As I heard that `crack` sound

It had your name on it

It should have been mine

But I will never forget you

My Geordie mate from the Tyne

You were only eighteen 

Forever will you remain

Every year I will come and visit

Have a drink just the same

Il will meet you soon in Valhalla

You will see this old man

Take the piss have a laugh

Like when you beet me up Pen y fan

Here have the last of my brandy

As it soaks in your grave

Il wipe away a tear

Green light on…….bye Dave.


© Tony McNally

Author's Notes/Comments: 

The  differnce between living and dying on the battelfield,a matter of centimeters.

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Scrapyard Confetti

I took a bullet in the heart
But I didn't know back then
Shell fragments penetrated my soul
I didn't feel a thing
We were the Heroes
The newspapers said
But I can now feel the bullet
And the ring ringing in my head
They are all still young men
Buried in frozen soil
Forever the real Heroes
Died for freedom
Not foreign oil
So I charge my glass
To drink for them all
We will meet again in Valhalla 
Hip Hip Hooray
For the glorious dead
Still walking this mortal coil. 

© Tony McNally

Author's Notes/Comments: 

Sometimes the survivors of War have the hardest battle of all.

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