Well I was trying not to post yet another blog post today but I realised that I had blathered on about my work but no one actually knows if I can write! This isn’t from my novel, it was a transformation piece I did for my A Level. It is based on the war poem, Dulce Et Decorum Est and is from the Gas’ perspective. It isn’t the best thing I have written but I hope you enjoy it, please let me know what you think!
Dulce Et Decorum Est
I watch the men from above, they march on and on, their backs bent, their heads bowed. They trudge through the sticky mud that surrounds them, fills their boots and infects their wounds. I approach in silence, my green eyes hungry for their fear. They never see me coming, they just hear me – and by that time it is too late.
I fly from my mother like a bird from a nest, my sisters and I hit the ground with a thud…thud…thud. Slowly, their heads turn, eyes widen, hearts quicken. It is the same every time, the men frantically reach to their sides to save themselves, but not all of them are quick enough. We spring with able limbs to a standing position and stand together. To the men we are a pulsating army, we creep forwards, closer and closer, rolling towards them like waves hitting the shore. They see me gliding easily over the mud that had caused them so much trouble. Softly I whisper to them, in their ears I give them hope, the sound of their loved ones.
A man lies on the floor, his face is blue, his cheeks filled with the pure, fresh air. I stroke his hair and my fingers prise open his lips. I feel his warm mouth and his fear fills me to the tips of my fingers. The last breath from his mouth pushes me away, but I claw through the air and force myself into his mouth, he clutches his throat as I enter his body. I fill his head with images of the woman he loves; he relaxes for a moment, but only a moment. I propel myself back up through his throat, into his mouth and onto the floor, bringing with me his very soul. In its place I leave my own soul, it slowly fills his lungs, choking him, drowning him. The soldier looks at me, right into my eyes, begging for mercy, his mouth moves but no sound comes from it. Blood runs from his mouth in stringy tendrils, from his eyes blood runs like tears. I turn away, towards my next victim.
I see a man, standing, surrounded by his dying comrades, he watches my sisters tear them apart and does nothing. On his head he has a black mask. I smile. When I am beside him I stroke his cheek, my hands hold either side of his face and I kiss his head. I have left my mark. I will be back for you next time, when you are not so quick. My breath hits his mouth, and curls around his head like a shimmering halo. He shivers, he knows I am near and watching him, he turns his back to me. I dance around him and wisps of green mist escape from me and pound his face. He mocks me, but soon I will mock him as I tear his insides from his body, as he lies coughing on the floor I will watch him, no pity on my face, no guilt in my heart. I will watch until he is gone, and my work is done. But for now I turn away and leave him alone, as he watches his friends fall one by one.
I stand above my sisters and observe them, their hands clawing men’s faces. None know the meaning of pity, they were not taught it. When we were made pity was not thought of. I see them weaken, they grow slower, they are dispersing.
A moment later my sisters’ heads turn, in the distance there was the familiar, thud…thud…thud. Smiles spread across our faces, some of the men had been hopeful as they saw us thinning.
My sisters and I were not made to last, we were made to kill, to kill quickly and disappear. After a few minutes we would float away, we would watch the men who survived and smile. They would watch us with wary eyes and hear our promise.
Above me the plane I came from continues on, the men above watch us killing the soldiers. They are equally wary of us, we have no loyalty, the war is not ours, we kill whoever is in our way. My sisters join the new forces, with them we are stronger.
With the help of the others our green army marches on, we step over the bodies of the fallen and we attack the living. Without hesitation we lunge at the men like animals and bring them to their knees, I stand and wait, looking ahead. When they are finished we continue. Men run, they run faster than they have ever run before but we will always be faster. I stand over one man, he is young and is clutching the letters of his loved ones to his chest. I lean over to taunt him, but I am halted, he was crying, tears were carving through the mud on his face and slipping into his mouth and he was whispering something. I lean closer, his last gasp escapes his mouth and he softly says “Dulce et Decorum est Pro patria mori!” he breaths me into his body, I escape through every pore, he is left on the ground, the letters clasped in his hand. His face is covered in brown blood.
I stand above him once more, his words ringing in my ears. They all knew the meaning, but none believed it, not anymore now they were surrounded by the death, pain and blood. I call to my sisters, we are done. Into the air we take, we separate and disperse, some stay behind to take the last men but my sisters have done well. Slowly our green limbs begin to break apart; my eyes are no longer a bright green but lime. The sun burns through my body and I am pushed apart. I will return for the other men, and I will draw from their lips the old lie.
Thanks for reading, let me know what you think!