Lance Corporal Frederick James Broughton 1895-1916 (click on picture to link to his family tree)

I'VE A LITTLE WET HOME IN A TRENCH

This version - Lan/Cpl Frederick James Broughton

(1895-1916)

I've a little wet home in a trench                                                                                                       

Where the rainstorms continually drench

The sky overhead

Clay or mud for a bed

And a stone that we use for a bench.

 

Bully beef and hard biscuits we chew

It seems years since we tasted a stew                                                                   

Shells crackle and scare

Yet no place can compare

With my little wet home in the trench.

 

Our friends in the trench oe'r the way

Seem to know that we've come here to stay

They shoot and they shout

But they can't get us out

Though there's no dirty trick they won't play.

 

They rushed us a few nights ago

But we don't like intruders and so

Some left us quite sore

Others left evermore

Near my little wet home in the trench.

 

So hurray for the mud and the clay

Which leads to der Tag, that's the day

When we enter Berlin

That old city of sin

And make the fat Berlinders pay.

 

Yes we think of the cold, slush and stench

As we lay with the Belgians and French

But there be shed of fear

Redder stuff than a tear

In my little wet home in the trench.

 

 

 

This poem, a hand-written copy of which was found among my grandfather's possessions after his death (Fred having died without issue, my grandfather was his eldest nephew), was presumed to be an original work by L/Cpl Fred Broughton.

 

However, I have since learnt that this is an amended version of a poem by Tom Skeyhill, an Australian regimental signaller fighting in Gallipoli. See http://noviomagus.tripod.com/correction.htm for a more detailed correction written by someone else who made this mistake. 

 

For Tom Skeyhill's original words, please visit http://eir.library.utoronto.ca/rpo/display/poem3015.html - the poem was first published in Soldier Songs From Anzac (Melbourne: The Specialty Press Pty. Ltd., 1915).

 

 

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