Our 1942 Eureka Moment

Bonnie Goodfellow

The full story of our nation’s birth was never 1915.
Our slow move from colony to nation
first flamed in 1854 stockade resistance.

And loyal enlistments still joined colonial militia;
with "Breaker" just the best-known
to come a cropper against British orders.

Our stomach for obeying war's call -
for allowing "normal wastage" -
acted as stillbirth for our nation.

So much lost, in death and grief,
by so many: All war is waste and failure
for those misled by leaders on all sides.

So when a second world war
affront was announced
fathers told sons: "Don't rush to enlist."

"They didn't do right by us
in the last one, son,
so hold your powder dry."

Till February '42 and direct assault
changed their minds to bear the grind
and loss of war again.