Loose Change (R/P)
He broke a dollar, mix of change
One early Monday morn’
Donned his hat and headed out
To visit friends, alone
On foliage guarded pathways
Decorated, sun-kissed miles
He reminisced their days of old
How innocent their smiles
Solemnly, he neared them
In silence, they reposed
Breezes of their shadows
Bristled by as his hair rose
A penny here, a penny there
Each grave he passed, respects
Six cents left, he recollects
Their vow, sworn, to protect
His change began to dwindle
As thoughts chilled through his bones
Drawing nearer to the grave
That bore his best friend’s stone
Tears filled his eyes, saluting,
With metallic-scented hand
Honoring the man he’d known
From bootcamp to his end
It wasn’t much, he pondered
Watching rays bounce off the token
But in the forty-one cents left
Lay all his words, unspoken
Tokens left at gravestones, dating back to the Roman Empire, are a means of showing respect. This piece today, “Loose Change”, is my humble attempt to show my respect to all those who’ve served our country with the ultimate sacrifice of their lives. In honor of you and with prayers for the grieving loved ones that you’ve left behind.
The tour began in the South of Italy.
He fought to the north, and then
by way of England, Sgt. Edward T. Weleski
charged Omaha Beach as
the Rangers scaled the cliffs.
Somewhere in France
a grenade’s shrapnel sent him
to the hospital, but only till
the Reich broke the line
and the wounded went to the front
to push back the Bulge
if they could hold a gun and stand,
which he did, until frostbite
wrecked his feet and sent him home.
He would have done it again.
War is always.
But we must never forget what it brings.
It does not bring clarity.
It does not bring peace.
It brings my grandfather back to France.
Unconscious on his deathbed,
that shrapnel still in his body
a half century later,
assembled grandchildren hear
Sgt. Edward T. Weleski
anxiously report to his commander
even as his wife holds his fading hand.
Terror and Life
The sun comes up,
If I’ve gone to sleep,
Then I wake up in panic,
Where the fuck am I,
Who am I,
Where’s my exits,
Where’s my weapon,
Everyday I ponder a simpler life,
Less full of mental issues and strife,
I wonder what could’ve been,
The relationships and women leaving,
The drug use and alcohol abuse wreaking,
Numb is all I know,
In my destroyed and ruined relationships it shows,
But I don’t ponder too long,
No one could’ve known that living suffering went this low,
But I never took the largest blow,
They say death comes in threes and I’m inclined to agree,
The names forever branded and always will be,
Die not in vain but forever with me,
Live I will for you and for me.
And we fall
Like daises in a field
we fall like promises that slip off a necklace
like dogs that lie cold in the mud
the mud that’s like dark rain
it mixes with our tears and those of the sky
and it beautifies our blue eyes when we lay in it
makes our fallen blood take on a darker hue
when we fall
our moaning in fever heating up the beds
our arms and legs and torsos clawed
by mans hatred
into the bang of a gun
some of us lack legs
and the ability to stand and not cry
but our masters lack hearts
they send us to become some gruesome painting of their victory
as if our blood
can truly write the word “conquered” on the daisies
when we collapse onto them
when we fall.
The Final Slip
(Memorial Day challenge)
His blood lent life to the fallow sand
Leaving death white, his limp, cold hand
Fingers grew stiff in my frantic grip
As breath gave his body the final slip
There we lay shattered on the silent earth
Where had this monster been brought to birth?
His body broken, never to heal
My soul shattered...never again to feel.
the colors of the earth,
the grass beneath my feet,
a blossom's sudden birth
where flesh and flower meet.
a land where i can live
without a thought or worry
that what i have to give
will never try to hurt me.
for across the mighty seas
exists a different place
that does not have our trees
nor a kind or happy face.
men shed blood for us,
we who they do not know,
so that in god we may trust
and democracy we may sow.
so today, tomorrow, and always,
pour your heart out and sing.
because we are safe the rest of our days.
let freedom ring.
Grave of the Unknown Soldier
Sweat, tears, blood, fear.
Gunshot wound to the stomach, terror in your eyes. You know the end is near.
Red runs through your shirt and pools in the dust. Your fumbling hand has done nothing to stop the bleeding. A man with many blurry faces is shouting but you cannot hear,
your dying senses can only see the fear in is eyes. His nightmare is to become you.
"Mama, come hold me." A cry for comfort, love and peace. You want to be taken somewhere safe, far away from here. Away from the battlefields and bombs and killing.
Two years pass, and then a few more.
Your family wonders what happened to you in the war. MIA was all the note said. Nobody knows if you are dead. At night, your little daughters say a prayer, they really wish that Daddy was here. The young wife you left behind is broken, her heart shattered into pieces and locked into a memory chest, never to be reopened.
So I stand here today, at the grave of the unknown soldier, to thank you for the bloody battle you fought so well and to wish you peace in heaven after a hellish death.
And although your loved ones are now dead, I still wish them the best. I hope they had a happy life and know that you didn't want to leave them behind.
My sacrifice can never compare to yours.
I salute you, unknown soldier.
don’t ask, don’t tell
"you're fighting for freedom!" they say
so why is it
that they had to censor themselves
that they could kill for others
but couldn't live their truth?
how is murder honorable,
how is bloodshed glorious
but kissing the one you love
bash them over the head
with the butt of your gun or the bible
but don't caress your lover's cheek
because it hurts our image
be proud of your suffering
but never of your joy
take solace in the comfort of other men,
but not in that way.
keep quiet or the finger of your fellows
might "accidentally" slip on the triggers
of their guns
live in fear not because of a foreign threat,
but because being who you are is a crime
the only thing they died for
is freedom to oppress
#lgbt #lgbtq #gay #lesbian #bisexual #memorialday #military #sacrifice #socialjustice
To my brothers and sisters in arms
That have fallen in service.
Sleep well my brothers and sisters in arms
Thank you for your service
And Thank you for your sacrifice.
You will not be forgotten.
Independent Duty Corpsman
Recon sniper platoon
3rd Force Recon
88 to 95