Sunday, September 9, 2012

The Big War - A Magpie Tale

Breakfast, 1921, Fernand Leger, 
courtesy Tess at The Mag. *click here*

Wiki says: "Léger's experiences in World War I had a significant effect on his work. Mobilized in August 1914 for service in the French Army, he spent two years at the front in Argonne. He produced many sketches of artillery pieces, airplanes, and fellow soldiers while in the trenches, and painted Soldier with a Pipe (1916) while on furlough. In September 1916 he almost died after a mustard gas attack by the German troops at Verdun. During a period of convalescence in Villepinte..."

The Big War

When the gas rolled in
I had nowhere I could hide
and it took me out.
Fucking mustard gas.
As I waited to go back
to the line I drew
your face and the pain
on it inverted, upside
down and in only
three primary shades
of gray but I need to kill
something, maybe with
the big guns in back
of us down the long lines, blow
the Boche all to hell.

September 9, 2012 9:30 AM


  1. Dark, raw...well done...I like your unique and historical take...

  2. Your poem is focused on a most horrible concept of war.... chemical poisoning. Certainly Leger was lucky to survive and be able to continue producing meaningful art. Thank you for sharing this reminder Christopher, of the need for seeking peaceful outcomes to all disagreements.

  3. Thank you for not only a pointed poem, but the education as well!

  4. At a loss

    Are we disgruntled today
    are we gasping
    and wheezing at a loss
    for breath
    cursing and ruing the day
    the gas took our
    life away
    but did not cause
    our death

    Chris McQueeney 9/9/12 10:03P.M.

  5. Truth, like darkness hits home! Lovely words, touching piece.

  6. This indo does indeed put another slant on it, Chris. I imagine the world must have been full of these headless people around that time, and you illustrate perfectly.

  7. Christopher, this is one of your finest ~~ ever!

  8. A very different (and educational) slant on the Mag Christopher - thank you.

    Anna :o]

  9. so much pain and agony! Thanks for the history background.


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