They came just before dark; we were sat in the park
And we all ran off, helter-skelter.
It wasn’t a game; we knew why they came;
But who’d be first reaching the shelter?
Ack-ack guns were popping as the bombs started dropping
And faster and faster we ran.
I was just nine years old, quite cheeky and bold,
When the war to end all wars began.
Late that darkest December, so well I remember,
Incendiary bombs fell all around.
High explosives fell too, killing people we knew.
Tall buildings just crashed to the ground.
As fires burned up higher in funereal pyre,
smoke hung overhead in a pall.
We shivered with fright that terrible night;
Yes, a great fear that held us in thrall.
Now every December, so well I remember,
Thoughts with the power to appal.
A feeling so shocking. No one filled my stocking,
The night Santa Claus didn’t call.
As I sit in my room in this bright nursing home –
Each year it all comes flooding back.
I sit quietly crying; in my mind I see, flying,
The Great British Union Jack.