A Little White Lie

Newtown School Waterford

My Letter Home: A Little White Lie

I look around at the greyness of the world. No mans land, a vacant void nobody dares enter, is still as deserted as ever. I can’t believe we have to suffer because two people couldn’t agree on something. I supposedly hate the other side, but what is the other side? Is it the people? Is it the land of their country? Is it the red uniform their superiors wear? Is it their weapons, or is it what they stand for? Am I the same to them as they are to me? Wondering why anyone would put themselves through this, as I have done, I glance down at the plain, empty page in my hand. Lifting my pencil, I sigh as I start to write…   Dearest Ma, All is well here, although I wish we could send letters more often. I can’t wait until I’m back home with you, Pa and Georgie. Oh, how I do miss those simple days when we would walk to the pond and dip our feet in, feeling the fish swimming by our feet. You better be keeping my room free of dirt and dust, for, within months, I may be back to see you both. And from then on, we shall spend every night together in front of the fire, warming up, even in the warm months of Spring and Summer. All the same, I’m having a great time here, we get to meet the newest recruits, who have come to join us in our noble battle and we may talk every night amongst each other of home and all the Sergeants are so very kind to us. We spend the mornings talking strategies, mid-day fighting, the afternoon cleaning ourselves off and the nights talking and playing card games. I’ve learnt quite a few new ones from Charlie, Walter and Art that I’ll teach you when I get back. We get plenty of food here, so please, don’t spend your money on chocolate for me. Buy yourself or Georgie something nice, ok? Lots of love, Your dearest son, Arlo.

Before I came here, I used to read a lot. And I mean a lot. Ask me any question and I’d know the answer. I look around the bare dugout. People pass by in slow motion as I glance at my letter home. A single tear falls from my left eye onto the letter. I hobble over to the sergeant who sneers at me as I try not let my muddy hands stain the letter. The sergeant grabs the letter out of my hand, slightly tearing the corner of the page. Hobbling back to where I was sitting before, I reach for a tissue to wipe my bloody leg. Lie: an intentional false statement said to deceive others. Synonyms- untruth, fib, fabrication. I know it’s wrong, and I feel guilty as I sit back down on the heap of mud, but it’s only a little white lie…