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The leafy lanes of Berkshire will not be quite the same,
Those martial sounds – once, all around – will not be heard again,
Familiar beating drums and fleeting thoughts of what had been
Will fade and fall into recall, for some that shared that dream.
A Dream? Yes, it will seem so in the years that are to be,
A ghostly dream so far removed from the reality
Of rows of houses, shops, and all those common, mundane things,
In everyday existence that normality always brings.
And only in the minds of those who occupied this place,
Will this dream be reality from past times, though a trace
Of some remembrance should exist to mark that which had been
So meaningful to this locality in years between.
A school of thought exists that in the fabric of a place,
There is a latent memory that can never be erased
Of all that happened in the years now gone from long-ago,
Ghosts of the past who haunt those leafy lanes we used to know.
The echo of a thousand bugle calls ring down the ages,
Sounds of hoof-beats pounding throughout countless history’s pages,
Young men arriving from the farthest corners of the earth,
Serving, learning how to fight for things, they thought, of worth.
And boys, in the first flush of youth, starting down life’s road,
Embarking on life changing paths, secure in the accord
Bestowed by wise and learned men, skilled in the many arts
Of burgeoning technology, to help them play their part.
This place of knowledge, discipline, of skill and dedication
Has served this Nation constantly, and helped in it’s salvation
From threats, providing fighting men, skilled artisans that fought,
Some dying for the freedom, so clearly, dearly bought.
And maybe, in the coming years, when all who knew are gone,
The ones who occupy this place may hear a distant song,
Or maybe, on a summer’s evening walk, may stop and pause,
And hear the sound of martial music, wondering at the cause.
And there again, faintly, commands may fill the evening air,
Or distant bugles at sunset to tell all to prepare
For the long sleep in prospect for this very special land,
Which served, fulfilled its destiny from when it first was planned.