An Observation (make of it what you will):
I once overheard some colleagues bemoaning the introduction of a new rifle, not because of its small caliber but because of its cumbersome appearance:
I was once a soldier smart,
Learned to stamp my feet, the art
Of calling out ‘The Time’, the thrill
Of perfect, synchronising drill.
We did it in the Sunshine glare
On what was called parade ground square.
It’s something that I’ll always miss.
Those halcyon days, what perfect bliss
To march along in line abreast,
Our arms swung well up to our chest.
Rhythmic, gravelled, crunching feet,
With Pipes and Drums, and pagan beat.
When marking time we’d raise our knees,
Oh what a jape, oh what a wheeze.
We’d point the toe, dig in the heel,
Stay with the marker on the wheel.
Saluting dais comes in sight
So make your dressing by the right.
Neck to collar and chest out,
This is what it’s all about.
Look at us, performing fleas:
Shoulder, order, stand at ease;
Perfect creases, looking good,
Just like all good soldiers should.
By Michael Shave
FILE PHOTO: Soldiers from the 2nd/14th Light Horse Regiment (Queensland Mounted Infantry) exercise their Freedom of Entry to the City of Brisbane. Photo by Oliver Carter.
DID YOU KNOW? They don’t teach slow march at Kapooka anymore.