Front Line

Front LineWe have had some beautiful autumn weather here in Ireland, a bonus after an unusually long summer. As I walked along my local beach taking photos, the sound of the waves pounding on the shore reminded me of war for some reason – it may have been because it’s the anniversary year of WW1.

As I looked over my photographs later that evening the one above stood out and inspired some verse. I haven’t written any poetry in ages, it’s amazing the effect a walk in the fresh air can have on you. I’ll have to do it more often, I’ve been spending too much time indoors writing books. I’m dedicating this poem to my husband’s great-uncle, Michael O’Neill of The Royal Dublin Fusiliers, 8th Battalion, who died in the trenches in Loos, 29 April 1914, aged 20.


About Jean Reinhardt

Author of 'A Pocket Full of Shells' an Amazon International best seller, Jean writes young adult and historical fiction. She has been known to shed a tear over Little House on the Prairie.
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2 Responses to Front Line

  1. mysm2000 says:

    Thanks for sharing this, Jean. It’s sad to think of all the young men who went off so bravely and didn’t come back. Both poem and photo are so poignant.


    • I was researching the family tree some years ago and nobody knew where Michael O’Neill was buried. On the Commonwealth War Graves site, I found a plaque to his memory on a memorial wall in Loos. It made me cry to see his name there along with so many others. He was reported missing in action at first. It seems his body was not recovered and I’ve just recently had a look at his division’s war diaries. He was gassed along with many others in a trench at the front. A horrible death. I cannot get him out of my head. I have two adult sons and I just kept picturing it happening to them. I’ll definitely be writing a book with him as a main character, but in the book he will have survived.


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