Hair to our shoulders, Beards to our knees,
Bully and biscuits and over ripe cheese.
Water that’s really salty and slimy too
Dirt in the saucepans, sand in the stew.

Miles we have travelled, months we have spent
Prowling the desert weary and bent.
Stop here today – push on tomorrow
With nothing to spend and nothing to borrow.

We pushed on and said, thank god at last,
Only to turn round and run back as fast.
Arrived at map reference tired as hell,
Six chaps are missing, cookhouse as well.

Even J. Priestly complained of the trails,
Far from a pub, at least 13 miles.
But ours is no hardship compared to the blokes
Camping in Blighty away from their folks.

We are close to Christmas, how happy we’ll be
No beer, no pudding, not even a spree.
So tomorrow we’ll pray for our folks back at home,
Away from our loved ones and nowhere to roam.

But we’ve solved all our problems, and know what to do
We will spend all Christmas thinking of you.

By James Chatwin, Royal Artillery - Revised by Ted Woolley, RA REME


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