Simon Berry

Born in the Midlands, educated in Yorkshire, worked for many years in Glasgow as a journalist , translator and writer. Former President of Scottish PEN and book pages editor on The Scotsman. Also lived in Sicily and Cyprus. Now lives in the Highlands and a member of the award-winning Ross-shire Writers Group.

Had first collection of poems published in 2014 (A Mask for Grieving & other poems FTRR Press). Has also written a biography of Victorian city poet Alexander Smith (Applauding Thunder 2013). Currently working on memoirs, working title If I’m Honest.



We are sending you

to prosecute our wars.

Just wars as are they all.

Accept this as our

commitment to you.

For your part think

adventure and travel

to unlikely locations

discover how you perform

in extreme situations.


Learn to prize your life.

Know we will surely

honour you if you lose it.

In a just war your sacrifice

becomes sweet and proper.


Add to the great glory

of youth your resolve

and courage that we

justly demand of you

on active service.


What happens to you

after this time of heroic

opportunities? You will be

rewarded with ribbons and

your peers’ esteem.

Then you will discover

the well-worn tales 

you have been told

of gallantry and sacrifice

were just for bedtime

not for blood and anguish.

Simon Berry October 2022

Read more of Simon's writings by visiting our Library on Home Page.


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