Today is Memorial Day. I have written a poem I would like to share with all of you. I appreciate you reading it and if you think it is worth sharing, please feel free to do so. As I am at best, a bar stool poet, I ask your pardon for any glaring literary and (almost certainly) grammatical errors. Two quick things:
1. The photo above is public domain and if not, I respectfully claim fair use and give thanks to the owner; and
2. Today is, in my opinion, not to be one spent sitting in some endless day of perpetual mourning. By all means, fire up the grill, have the beverage of your choice, play with the kids. To me, that is the personification of freedom and liberty. Just please, in your way, take a moment to remember those who died. If you have a flag, today is a good day to display it. At 12:01 p.m. EDST there is a moment of silence. There may be an event in your hometown you want to attend. However you recall today, that is your choice. The poem that follows is mine. Thanks for reading.
Beneath the Gentle Grass by Jeno Berta
In quiet places they are found;
They do not stir, utter a sound;
Here is their final home;
Adored with only a simple stone.
On this day, we give pause;
To those who gave their lives to the cause;
They fought for country and for kin;
Some only once, some again and again.
When peril called on sea or land;
Without delay they raised their hand;
Charge the enemy, into the breach;
For their protection, they did not beseech.
Some died in battle or a hospital bed;
Others from the demons raging inside their head;
Some in a prisoner camp;
Or a few feet from a landing craft ramp.
Near some lie those who did not fight;
Yet kept the home fires burning bright;
Of their fallen love they did not brag;
Just accepting with grace a folded flag.
If you go to this place, and I hope you will;
Remember those who lie there still;
Know they are at peace last;
Far from the carnage of cannon blast;
Far from death, far from pain;
From all suffering they can abstain.
Let us honor, let us grieve,
Those from whom we are cleaved;
Yet also we should recall with pride;
Of their courage displayed worldwide.
Of battles fought and wars won;
The finest of our daughters and sons.
So take a moment, if you will;
To ponder those who paid freedom’s bill;
In our national cemeteries, fallen heroes are in masse,
Their honored rest eternal, beneath the gentle grass.