Aldwinckle, Eric, Letter, 1 August [1944]

00001604-5.jpg
Description: 
Letter to Harry Somers

Tabs

Case Study: 
Creative Dialogue Across the Ocean: Eric Aldwinckle’s Letters to Harry Somers
Creator: 
Aldwinckle, Eric
Source: 
letter
Date: 
1 August [1944]
Place: France
Collection/Fonds: 
Contributer: 
McMaster University Libraries
Rights: 
Copyright, public domain: McMaster University owns the rights to the archival copy of the digital image in TIFF format. Reproduced with the kind permission of Margaret Bridgman.

Identifier: 
00001604-5
Language: 
eng
Type: 
image
Format: 
jpg
Transcript: 

There is the sound of traffic and, when we are disturbed at night it is the sound of our ack ack. To be close to them (I believe there is one hiding in the next field) is to hear a sound which is unique. It sounds altogether too stagy to be real and I can never conceive of it as being a real thing. The nearest description I can find is to imagine yourself the size of an ant, laying on the ground under a football which has just been kicked. Include in that the sound of the swish of the boot approaching and you have it.
When gun fire on the front line is heavy, it makes the earth tremble and the deep sound seems to fill your body. The sight of all this is even more unreal. Theatrical flashes silhouette the various horizons intermittently and tracer bullets form a tapestry of orange and red against a deep veiled sky -- but a tapestry which is ever changing, cascading. Sound and sight together receive something which neither painting or music can adequately translate. The creative experience is contained in the music and colour pattern of the fantastic reality.
We know less about the progress of war at the moment than you do. Being so close to the front it is surprising how little you can find out.