had a look around despite the bullets. The first place I struck was the clearing station – a big tarpaulin on 4 legs sheltering half a dozen doctors while make examinations of the wounded, and in rows outside were the wounded – hundreds of them, lying in the sun on the bare earth, thickly coated with dust, sweat and blood – to say nothing of the flies, which were there in millions. Poor fellows; it was quite impossible even to do anything for them. Impossible even to get them a drink of water which on the Peninsula is more precious than gold. They just lay there pending attention – removal to the hospital ships in the roadstead.
Most of them were our own fellows, New Zealanders and Australians and you will be proud to know that although many of them were wounded almost unto death I did not hear a single complaint. Some had been waiting their turns for two days, but they knew what the medical staff was up against and they grumbled not. Oh but you have just reason to be proud of the fact that you are Colonials. Away back there in New Zealand, you read in the papers that the Australasians by their brilliance and pluck achieve the impossible. You read about the glorious bayonet charges – of the dogged pluck of the few cut off and assailed on all sides. You read all this and feel pride – a just pride welling up inside you. Probably you go out and have "one' just to celebrate the victory.
But have you ever thought about the aftermath. Just try and picture what a battle-field is like the day after. You'll never succeed in getting a true impression, you must walk over it, before realisation of how horrible, how dreadful war is, and realisation came to me when we left the base and made our way up towards the firing line. We passed through a gully, up which the New Zealanders Australians and Maories had fought the night previous and Oh; the horror of it. Dead nothing but dead men, New Zealanders Maories, Englishmen, Australians, and Turks, hundreds upon hundreds of them, lying in al sorts of attitudes, some hardly marked others mangled out of all hope of recognition and swarming all over – the flies. Further up where the Turkish fire was still hot – the wounded lay with the dead. Some had been there for hours, would lay there for further hours, would lay there until stretcher bearers – heroes every one of them – would under cover of darkness, attempt their removal.
All this I saw from a shelter shed and as I gazed the bang, bang, bang of the rifles, the sharp rattle of the machine guns, the nerve racking scream and subsequent deafening explosions of the big 6" shells never for a moment ceased. Just a few hundred yards away were our trenches, the Turkish trenches but a few score yards higher up and between the trenches lying out in open spaces on the hillsides, were the killed and the wounded. What the casualty lists say I don't know, but at this one point of our long line, there were thousands lying there who will never fight again. Can you imagine just how awful it all is? Can you wonder that the realisation had come to us with an intensity almost bewildering? But you will be glad to know that the 5th (I'm not boasting) behaved equally as well as their comrades of the Main Body. They had landed but a few hours before and were in an environment calculated to shake the nerve of almost anyone, and suddenly they were under fire with a vengeance. The Turks had got right over us.
Sever of D. (Otago) Coy., were hit, and the next shell depleted the ranks of B Coy. Then came "A" Coy's turn, but only a couple of our men were wounded and so it went for some time. Every 30 seconds the trees and shrubs were torn and beaten by the rushing bullets, every little while some one was hit, but still men kept on until a friendly