Day 6~THE OTHER SIDE OF THE SENTRY-BOX
The changing guards of Buckingham Palace,
Another shift standing perfectly still.
A bearskin hat, holding a rifle, my duty
Guard of honour to the palace and royalty.
Tourists taking photographs, children screaming
The rifle unfired, gets heavy with time,
After my shift it's oiled and polished,
Kept in readyness to defend the crown.
Hey! Sarge! Can I take a picture of you!
With my kids, and Mum in the wheelchair?
My eyes stay fixed ahead, expessionless.
I stand through my shift surrounded by people,
A pretty young lady gets up really close
Posing for a photograph next to me,
My eyes firmly focussed on the distant horizon,
Wow! My imagination is rampant and free.
Mister, did you fight in the war overseas?
Who killed the bear that made your hat?
My unspoken reply, Up yours mate, you answer that.
Oi, Soldier! Do you want a fight?
This from a group of youngsters
Attempting to gain a flicker of recognition.
I stand motionless, there is no danger here.
People come here from all over the world
To visit the palace and glimpse the Queen.
The time comes, at the end of our duty
Military precision, as our posts are relieved.
We march up and down a smart body of men
To be replaced by fresh rested soldiers,
Trained to kill but infused with ceremony
Facing the prospect of an influx of tourists
Invading the palace flashing cameras and smiles
Changing the guard at Buckingham palace.
By John Yeo 6th.November 2013