Friday, November 11, 2011
On Veterans Day
Wagering the Future
In deep Ardennes snow, with an idea
of a better future, growing boys
in men's uniforms waged war.
No games in the backyard, no plastic
army men, this was the Real McCoy.
War is a bet on the margin;
no guarantee of a big payoff, a win
not always a win. When the call comes
the wagers are placed, the ante
always bigger than expected.
So it was for us, not yet born
when our fathers marched off to war.
The margin bet has been called:
time to pay up, or to collect the prize.
For some, the usurer knocks at the door.
from Daughter of the Ardennes Forest, Main Street Rag, 2007
On this Veterans Day, I dedicate (again) my poems of war and PTSD to my father, Pvt. Charles J. Willette. I honor his service and suffering and stop to recall on his behalf how things were in the Battle of the Bulge, and how they have gotten for young men of war today. We should all remember so others will not forget.