“What makes heroic strife famed afar, famed afar
What makes heroic strife famed afar
What makes heroic strife, to whet the assassin’s knife
And haunt a parent’s life wi bloody waur, bloody waur
And haunt a parent’s life wi bloody waur ” Robert Burns, (from Ye Jacobites by Name.)
20,000 died 010716. 60,000 did not. 40,000 was wounded, so was 3000. 800,000 died, poor sod. 7 who came from our town died, 299 from your place died. 3 from 5, and 12 came back. 1 from Law joined the RFA. 10 from school, 6 from the brickworks died, his Mum was a bit upset. 14 said he was 18. 305 was shot in the early morning. 1 in the afternoon, 1 got about a bit, he also went over the top, and was black.(What do you think of that?) 20 joined from our street. 100,000 in K1. 10,000,000 passed through here. 6.9 caught the train. 10,000 walked this way. 11.8. or was it 26.4 walked up to Arras with rifle and pack, but their number 1 did for them both by his plan of attack. You were his only 1, (of 2, often forgot) but I was his 1 from 300,000. 8.4 million other rank. 14, off the Dardanelles, 14 on the Somme, 15 at Spoilbank, 16 at Essex Farm.
Yes, its numeric garbage, Waur is bloody and brutalising, people die, people are wounded. Arithmeticians, oops meant to type “Historians” of the First World war take note. Stop dehumanising the war. You are rapidly boring the number 2 out of people. It is not a mathematical exercise. Have you forgotten they were people? George Anderson, William Dick, Rowland Knight ,Harry Patch, Robert Rogers, Samuel Slack, Walter Tull, William Ward, People. Numbers are people too. Don’t ignore that.