"Out where the bombs are bursting and the cannons like Hell-doors slam"


"Out where the bombs are bursting and the cannons like Hell-doors slam"


The foreground looks peaceful enough in the bright sunshine of this July day, but in the woods beyond an inferno is roaring. Shells are tearing great craters in the brown earth, flinging showers of dirt and rock to every side ; trees are crashing to the ground, splintered at the butt by direct hits ; huge boughs, riven from their trunks, are tumbling on the heads of men beneath ; sulphurous fumes and the stench of dead bodies choke the breath of living men. The ground is littered with bits of bombs, unexploded shells, rifles, grenades, pieces of torn uniforms ; arms, legs, headless trunks, protude from excavations in which exploding shells have buried them ; fragments of what were once living men hang gruesomely from the shattered trees overhead ; crash after crash the bombs explode, uniting in one continuous, deafening roar. And through it all creep living men, forcing their way forward, ever forward, threading and tearing their way through acres of twisted barbed wire, falling in agony here, dropping without a sound there, dashing from tree to tree beyond. A haze hangs over these woods, broken here and there by a cloudburst of heavy black smoke : it is the haze of death. Men are dying there, by companies, by battalions, by regiments. Living men are suffering the torments of hell. And this is war. This is what our men faced — and facing, conquered — when they crossed the seas in answer to our country's call and fought its battles in a foreign land.



1 stereograph : b&w
1 gelatine silver print stereograph (8 x 15 cm) mounted on card (9 x 18 cm)


Copyright. The Keystone View Company
No known restrictions on publication


World War through the stereoscope

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Keystone View Company, “"Out where the bombs are bursting and the cannons like Hell-doors slam",” Monash Collections Online, accessed June 23, 2024, https://repository.erc.monash.edu/items/show/25452.

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