It's the end of the 1916 winter and the conditions are almost unbelievable. We live in a world of Somme mud. We sleep in it, work in it, fight in it, wade in it and many of us die in it. We see it, we feel it, eat and curse it, but we can't escape it, not even by dying ..?
Private Edward Lynch enlisted in the army aged just eighteen. As his ship set sail for France, the band played Boys of the Dardanelles and the crowd proudly waved off their young men – men who had no notion of the reality of the trenches of the Somme; of the pale-faced, traumatized soldiers they would encounter there; of the mud and blood and the innumerable contradictions of war.
Upon his return from France in 1919, Private Lynch recorded his experiences on the Western Front in twenty school exercise books, perhaps in the hope of making sense of and coming to terms with all that he had witnessed. Edited and published here for the first time, Lynch's story is a rare and precious find: a personal account that vividly captures the horror and magnitude of the First World War, written from the perspective of an ordinary infantryman.
Told with dignity, candour and surprising wit, Somme Mud stands as a testament to the power of the human spirit – for out of the mud that threatens to suck out a man's very soul rises a compelling true story of humanity and friendship.
Išleidimo metai: 2006
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