Gert Strydom

Gold Star - 30,073 Points (03 April 1964 / Johannesburg, South Africa)

To Have A Girl Like You - Poem by Gert Strydom

I remember you coming
to Pretoria station
to say goodbye
while I caught the train
to a military camp
and four months of war.

The clock on the wall
showed that we were
half an hour early
and I bought you a can of Coke
at the café
before we walked
to the right platform

where the train
departing to Cape Town
had just come in
and I carried the brown duffle bag
and was dressed in my brown uniform
with shining boots and beret
and your big blue eyes
had a life of their own.

It was always first Cape Town,
then De Brug (at Bloemfontein) ,
next Luhatla and after that to war
and by then you knew that route.

There was a sad smile on your face
and you were beautiful
in a classical way and slender
and I gave you a hug
and a goodbye kiss
and when that train left
we both waved.

Other soldiers where also
looking and waving at you
and some to loved ones
and another officer said
that I was lucky
to have a girl like you
and the next goodbye
was at Waterkloof military airbase,
but you wouldn’t be in it
and I didn’t know it then.

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Poem Submitted: Thursday, April 29, 2010

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