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The last verse of Alfred Lichtenstein -Poet- 1889- 1914- Expression in verse
Alfred Lichtenstein poem-A Prayer to the people
I go through the days
Like a thief.
And no one hears
My heart lament to itself.
Please have pity.
I hate you.
I want to embrace you.
Verse of Alfred Lichtenstein
Alfred Lichtenstein Expressionist writer
The month of September 2014 marked the 100th Anniversary of the death of Alfred Lichtenstein.
A German-Jewish Expressionist poet and writer.
Alfred Lichtenstein had almost completed his National Service in Munich Germany.
On the 4th of August 1914 starting at 8.00 am Germany began it's invasion of Belgium.
This violated the neutral status of Belgium.
In the final hours of that day at 11.00 pm Britain declared war on Germany.
Alfred Lichtenstein found himself suddenly deployed into active Military Service.
August-September 1914- Battle of the Frontiers
Battle of the Frontiers Aug 4th-August 29th 1914
Alfred Lichtenstein was in the 2nd Division of the Royal Bavarian Regiments which in 1914 was a part of the Prussian Army.
The Prussian Army was combined into the German Imperial Army of 1914.
In the early stages of World War one the German Imperial Army was engaged with fighting against the Belgium, French and British expeditionary Forces.
The actions that took place at the borders of Belgium Northern France became known as the Battle of the Frontiers.
Alfred Lichtenstein wrote about the "Battle of Strassburg" in his last verse.
At the Battle of Liege on August 4th-16th 1914 The City surrendered but the Belgian Army held their ground in the twelve forts that surrounded it.
These forts withstood some calibre of explosive shell.
The modernised German high explosive shells however penetrated the forts.
Today- The ruins of Fort Loncin are preserved as a National Monument in Belgium.
The bodies of the 350 men who died there still lie beneath the rubble.
Battle of the Frontiers
By August 20th 1914 the German Army was occupying the Belgium capital of Brussels.
The villages, towns and Cities came under heavy fire from explosive shells.
Many civilians died.
The Belgium army was forced back toward Antwerp.
British Expeditionary Forces fought back and held positions.
At places like Mons for as long as possible.
This was to give the French Army time to reach and defend Paris.
The resulting first Battle of the Marne ( 5-12th September 1914) to secure Paris was a keystone success for the Aliied forces.
The withdrawing German Army were pursued to Aisne and North to the higher ground.
Here the German Army halted and the trench warfare began.
Alfred Lichtenstein Verse- The Grenade
First a bright, brief drum roll,
A bang and explosion into the blue day.
Then a noise, like rockets climbing on
Iron rails. Fear and long silence.
Then suddenly in the distance smoke and a fall,
A strange hard dark echo.
Verse by Alfred Lichtenstein
After the Battles of Mons, Ardenne, Namur and Charleroi in August 1914.
As the trench lines were dug and more static positions established.
Fighting continued in the rear positions of Northern France into September 1914.
At L'Etoile woods near to the village of Vermandovillers in the Picardy Region.
British Expeditionary forces and the French Army fought with the German Imperial Army.
During one of these battles Alfred Lichtenstein was fatally wounded on September 24th 1914.
His last Verse-The Battle of Saarburg- verse by Alfred lichtenstein
The Battle of Saarburg
The earth grows mouldy in fog.
The evening is as oppressive as lead.
Electric sparks crackle and whimper all around,
Breaking everything in two.
Like wretched hobos
Cities are smoking on the horizon.
I lie, God-forsaken,
In the rattling front line of defenders.
I stand firm in the greyness
And defy Death
The last verse of Alfred Lichtenstein
Prior to the Centenary 2014-18 of the Global conflict of World War one 1914-1918.
With the expected increase of tourists to the battle fields of France and National Events planned to mark the Centenary.
The Belgium Army DOVO) have been collecting and destroying still active mines and shells.
Left from the conflict of a Century ago.
The Belgium Army has experienced fatalities during this task.
Some have suffered mustard gas blisters on exposed arms and legs.
In 2012 twelve tonnes of earth was dug out from Ypres in France.
The earth still laden with bullets and stick grenades.
It is estimated that during World War One on the Battlefields of France over a billion projectiles were hurled between opposing forces.
This year 2014, two construction workers were killed by an undetected explosive.
Since 1918, 360 people have died around the area of Ypres from such incidences.
Daily Mail- article from 2013 about WW1 bomb clearance on Battle fields of France.
The Verse of Alfred Lichtenstein- Alfred Lichtenstein- DoDo press- translated to English
World War 1 - H.P. Wilmott