AGED 19

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I’d just started blogging last year when I first posted a piece about The Étaples Military Cemetery in the Pas-de-Calais department of Northern France. The Cemetery stands on the former site of a vast military hospital complex used by the Allies during the First World War. Being away from the frontline trenches the military hospital was relatively safe from enemy land attacks. The hospital could cope with up to 20,000 casualties at any one time.

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Given that we are so close to Remembrance Day I thought a reprise was in order. I was 20 when I visited the Cemetery. There were rows and rows of graves that simply gave a name and an age, ‘Aged 19’. It was food for thought and reflection. The gravestones seem to speak. They told me how lucky I was.

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The song itself remains a demo version, nothing more. Just a simple experiment of possible styles of composition and construction. That’s all. It’s what the song’s about that’s important. Nothing else. I won’t post the whole lyric, although there is a link to the song itself that still sits on my old SoundCloud.

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AGED 19

On that day I saw a thousand graves

They all said ‘Aged 19’

Wall to wall white marble stone

Stood on grass so green

They went on for miles

As far as I could see

Relics of remembrance

A cosmic storm’s debris

 

Were they just a band of brothers or just a band of lonely ghosts?

What was good is now on the edge of being the most obscene

It’s a lonely road to travel when you are so young

Where did it all go so wrong? Could it have been foreseen?

Guess that it hardly matters now

When the stones say ‘Aged 19’

Battles fought and lives all lost

Or something in between?

This unholy

Heaven’s door

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Copyright © 2016 Zoolon Audio.  All rights reserved.  Unauthorised copying, reproduction, hiring, lending, public performance and broadcasting prohibited.

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About Zoolon

‘Zoolon Hub’ is the name of my business. I am a songwriter and sound artist from the UK going by the name of George Blamey-Steeden. For what it’s worth, I have a First-Class BA (Hons) in Creative Music Technology and decided to put the skills I picked up studying, plus those I taught myself to good use by running my own company. That way, I keep hold of the reins of my own creativity.

28 Responses

  1. This is so heartrendingly moving. When in France, on a bus heading back to Germany , we passed the Lorraine American Cemetery and Memorial where more than ten thousand American soldiers are buried. Here, in my family cemetery are several graves of unknown soldiers dating back to the revolutionary war. It is a never ending cycle. Thank you for the beautiful photographs and the very poignant words.

  2. We’ve started talking to Blondie about WWII, about her great-grandfathers, and the toll such battles have on homes. Tucked away in Milwaukee, surrounded by the baseball stadium and…I dunno, random commercial places, is the veterans cemetery. Rows and rows of such stones. Though one of these days, I dearly want to take the kids to Arlington. As you know, there is a power to such a place that can’t not move one’s soul.

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