Second Dad fought in
Second day of WWII D-Day.
Never spoke about war,
'Tho might have if lived
Beyond short 47 years;
Died in 1968, heart defect
Undoubtedly curable by
Today's medical marvels.
During teens, Mom and I
Stayed up late watching
Sentimental WWII movies,
Evoking tears and regret,
But no conversations with Dad;
All 3 dads, Greatest Generation.
Although hate contemporary
War movies that prompt sobs,
Watched "Saving Private Ryan"
For possible glimpse into Dad's
Experiences on French beaches,
Uncertain whether on land or in air.
Had Dad survived into old age,
Might have told dreadful stories:
Bodies floating off shore,
Horrific carnage on shore;
Intolerable terror contrasted
With Yanks' can-do spirit and
Youthful intrepid invincibility;
Duty conflicted with death.
We send our young to fight
Political, ideological, financial
Battles, sacrificing generations
To protect our present, yet
Putting our future in danger, our
Potential in peril, again and again.
In May, June, September, November,
And December, we specifically honor
Casualties: premature, mid-life, late deaths;
Of all wars; in Honolulu; in New York,
Washington, DC, and Pennsylvania;
And on occupied French beaches.
Small wonder the allure of bombs,
Missiles, stealth aircraft, and drones
That protect aggressors while also
Destroying people and products.
May freedom ring,
May peace and justice prevail.
Ann Beth Blake
(c) June 6, 2014