By Anna Garthwaite | Posted: Monday May 15, 2017
Room 9 has been developing strong ANZAC recounts using the feedback from the camp recounts and developing writing goals. Here are some of our recounts.
Writing goal: develop a strong conclusion.
The sound of distant gun shots rolled around inside my head, it was like a two year old attacking a drumset. The thought of ending up in this humongous dump of misery hadn’t occurred to me back when I was scratching my signature over the sign up sheet. Instead my mind was pointed in the direction of adventure, the thought of being helpful and kind and serving my country. My life was young and had far to go a like an explorer discovering an island and then realising there is another whole country yet to explore. This job as a nurse working on the nursing ship, the Maheno, spending my life as a helping hand had seemed like a good idea. 1917 has been difficult with the enemy advancing, each bullet filled with hatred. It’s that glint of disgust that pulls the trigger!
Now, my tears were mournfully falling into the lapping sea, I watched as the salty water engulfed the delicate droplets my sad eyes had produced. Life as a nurse was a rollercoaster ride, twisting and turning with ups and downs, but there were few up’s and many stomach turning downs. Us nurses were constantly being thanked and praised as the white veiled angels of mercy, however I had my doubts. Don’t angels constantly have a metallic spark about them? Wouldn’t I be feeling a magical sensation spawning inside me every time I saved a whimpering soldier’s life? I constantly produced my best work and carefully fixed the wounds that bullets and shrapnel had caused, leaving only small scars, however many were beyond the ability of good repair.
Destructive bombs and missiles were surrounding the world impacting on people’s lives every day, leaving blood, tears and pain and others in deep despair crying over tragic losses. Chaos enclosed around me, killing the soldiers who are currently fighting for our land. Why were humans so unsettled, hungry for war and deaths and eager for everyone with opposite uniforms to lie dead?
I watched as the nurses scurried around as usual worried expressions were drawn across their faces, working and concentrating hard at the disturbing scenery, bones had been shattered, muscles torn and the blood everywhere was ghastly. The news was spread like a virus getting at everybody, that the yellow telegram everyone feared shall be sent soon, and the family's will call and call the post office checking some hasn’t messed up the system, that their loved ones were still alive, with a beating heart and working lungs.
Anzac Recount WW1
Dear Diary / 28th July 1914
I landed in Gallipoli and a tornado of dust swept across my face. I remember that day clearly when they began recruiting men to fight against the Ottoman Empire, I wanted to join the fight too. I hated school and I was ready for an adventure so I lied about my age (I just turned 15 a few days ago) so that I could fight for my country’s freedom.
I woke up, ready for the first day of the battle and I suddenly heard…. BOOM! BANG! CRASH! It came from our enemy. I sprung to my feet, ran towards the other soldiers and shouted at them to get up and grab their weapons. My heart was pounding with fear. My heart felt like it would burst as the fear of the enemy was just around the corner. I could smell smoke coming from the other side of the western front. I choked on the revolting smell as it crept up into my lungs. I blocked my nose and darted towards my sniper, hid behind our trench and fired a bullet at the enemy. 1 down another 100,000 to go.
Two hours passed like a blur, I glanced around me and I was deeply horrified. The dead bodies were piled high like a mountain. Their limp and lifeless bodies were drenched in blood and a chilling shiver slithered down my spine. I turned away, shifting my gaze towards the aftermath of where the grenades had struck, to avoid looking at those bodies. The sight of those mountainous bodies, made me sick to my stomach. Tears pricked my eyes as I covered my mouth, avoiding the smell that wafted from that terrible sight.
6 months later……….
Nothing had changed at war, my life was dull and full of misery. Homesickness became an endless dream and I was trapped inside it, unable to escape. I'm just a kid, only 15 and never have I ever been away from my family before. I was also terribly wounded on my arm by a chunk of metal that exploded out of a grenade, I was placed at the makeshift infirmary to be treated. My family had sent a letter to me, I slowly opened it and read it as a teardrop crept out of my eye, I burst into tears. They were worried sick about me.
Dear Diary / 11th November 1918
Finally the war ended I hated it and I regret going to war because I was so miserable. We traveled on a ship back to Dunedin, New Zealand, it took over 3 months. I was back in my home town and everything could go back to normal. I felt really relieved that I had even survived.
Written by Anna Yuen
Excited, nervous, terrified I didn't know what to feel at 3.00pm. As we speed in our boats towards the shore we had no idea what to prepare for. Me and John were talking about what we will do when we get home. 3.20pm As we got close to the shore we soon realised that they were waiting up on the cliff for us all of a sudden a bullet ripped through John's chest and he collapsed to the ground, “JOHN”! I threw myself off the boat as bullets whistled past me, I realized I left my gun on the boat so I swam under the water towards the shore as people were getting shot of the boats I saw the commander fall off the boat dead dreadfully I ripped the gun from his his hands as I took a massive breath.
I took the gun and ran for the shore as bullets were getting directed at me, I ran behind a rugged cluster of rocks to provide cover fire for our team as they struggled to dig the trenches as dirt was getting flung in the air when bullets collided with earth. I was pelting bullets into the Turkish soldiers whilst the rock was getting shattered when I looked back at the cliff I couldn't see any body when I looked back at the trench they gestured to run over so I sprinted over without looking up and I felt so relieved.
I ran thought the trench to General Stewart to wait for orders “ Every body climb up the cliff by using the rope”
“YES SIR”, we all hustled over to the cliff and started to climb and climb as I pulled myself over the edge, my stomach quickly sank as I saw lines of soldiers aiming directly aim at us. I dove behind a pile of sandbags as bullets were ripping into us, I poked my gun over the top and held the trigger in and bullets pelted towards them and they all started falling back as we pushed towards them .
As it started slowly becoming night we all set down and dug in for the night we all wished what just happened was just a dream but it was very far from that and a long and frightening night lay ahead ….