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Retreat to the Hindenburg Line by Matt Draper

By on March 27, 2010

The poem “Retreat to the Hindenburg Line” is written about the true battle in which my Great, Great Uncle Jim Cochran was killed.


Raised at Enoggera in Queensland

The date of 1915

Was the recruitment of men, making the Seventh Brigade

The bravest of troops has ever there been

This 25th Battalion left Australia in early July

Sweat, blood and tears they trained in Egypt

Not knowing what fate, new mates said goodbye

 September, the trenches of Gallipoli they manned

Reinforcing the depleted New Zealand and Australian Division

Men of the Seventh Brigade added to their vision

The last major Allied offensive turned back

December 1915 the brigade return to Egypt’s track

March 1916 then proceeded to France

Again, the bravest of troops has ever there been

First of Australian Imperial Force to take on this stance

Only the Lord above fore saw the fate about to be seen

Operation Alberich the Germans called it

Floundering in the mud exhausted with 785 casualties

To the Hindenburg Line Aussie soldiers did retreat

Again and again, the bravest of troops has ever there been

His hands helped Australia be free

Not much older than my brothers, sister and me

“Killed in action at France” was Private Uncle Jim the plaque told

Resting now, tired and weary but never old

By Matt Draper

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