Take the time for me today, grant me this one dream
Remember a soldier of any war,
silenced by a scream
Then think of what you have and hold
The precious gift of life
Taken for granted for all these years
Miles removed from a grieving wife.
Take a minute and listen closely, on all the lakes or streams
Or hill or mountain, or meadow, or forest
The quiet there it seems
Is broken by the melody, of a thousand in their youth
Speaking to you loudly
Speaking the simple truth
Is that the loon you hear that calls
Is that the wind that cries
Is that the raindrop on your cheek
Is that the tree that sighs
Is that the heartbeat that you feel
The coolness of the air?
Or is it something completely different
If only the time to care.
Maybe instead what you really hear
Their voices outlined by the moon
The young men trying to speak to you
Through the river the lake and the loon
It is my dream that you listen to them
Hear what they have to say
And you will know that you are blessed
With the gift of life today.
Come fish with me and stand in the river, and listen to the eagle’s cries
And feel the mist on a mornings’ face, with the sunrise in your eyes.
Watch the river otters play on the bank, heralding the new day begun
And feel the power of a steelhead’s leap, on a sizzling, dazzling run.
Come fish with me, my friend please do.
And take the time for just me and you.
But he answered,
“Maybe tomorrow, I’ve work to do.
Not time right now
There’s more to do.
But one day soon I’ll give you a call
I don’t have the time now to enjoy leaves of fall.”
Just let me know when you’re ready my friend
I’ll always be here on the river’s bend.
And I waited for the day that the phone would soon ring
Each day on the river
Don’t wait till tomorrow,
played in my head
Please help me I'm dying a young soldier said.
Oh yes the phone rang
On a clear crystal day
But it wasn’t my friend, let’s go fishing he’d say
But his wife grown old steadfast by his side
Never time for the river, never time for his bride.
Now I fish all alone with the mist on my face
With steelhead leaping in this beautiful place.
And each morning I remember
young soldiers that died
And my old friend not fishing
No tomorrow at my side.
1st of the 14th Infantry Brge. 4th Inf. Div.
ODE TO PEACE
Wars I Have Known
The Great Depression:
Big house, wrap-around porch, porch swing, honeysuckle on the vine and summer rains. Sounds of children playing, laughing, making memories.
A time of peace and safety, a time of joy in the simple pleasures: parks, band concerts, radio programs, swimming in the river—all free in the Thirties.
Then, the Forties:
Suddenly, bombs, Pearl Harbor, tears replace laughter, war replaces peace, air raid drills, fear replaces security.
Men…NO! boys—boys in uniform, gone four years.
Girls move home, work in factories building war machines. Everyone affected.
Everyone contributes ”to the war effort” they said, “for the duration” they said.
Postman most popular man—mailcall highlight of everyone’s day.
Air mail letter! Still safe! Still alive! Thank God—once again.
Then it’s over. Boys return—HEROES ALL. Some whole, some broken—all welcome, all loved.
Back to civies, back to jobs, back to school. Government paid—they called it the “G.I. Bill”—reward for services rendered.
World of changes. Assembly lines turn swords into plowshares, build new cars instead of airplanes, appliances instead of guns.
Marriages, babies, soda fountains, drive-in movies, poodle skirts. A time of innocence—the fifties.
Sixties kids complain they can’t relate. They never had a Depression, never had a war. World War I belonged to grandparents. World War II belonged to parents.
Too young to remember Korea. Besides, it was “over there” somewhere. It was not a war, it was a “conflict” – the president said so.
They came home—some alive, some dead, many wounded, MANY HEROES.
It was over there too, but it blossomed—not like a flower in spring, but like a cancer in winter.
It came over here. More boys in uniform—more boys gone. More boys never returned.
NO HEROES in the Seventies.
Only rebellion, hippies, marijuana, Kent State, Woodstock, body bags, military escorts, flag-draped coffins, three-gun salutes, Gold Star Mothers.
This war touched them—this war touched everyone.
Finally, in the Eighties, we honored too late, in a trickling moment of patriotism, the fallen and forever damaged of Vietnam.
Yes, this war hurt everyone.
Thirty years later it still hurts and it will never stop hurting.
But, in the Nineties, once more the house is full of love—full of grandchildren making memories: the smells of home, the sounds of happiness, feelings of peace and security.
Yes, once again, the house is full of love.
But, it will never be full again—never.
Mary J. Voss
38661 Brandywine Ave.
Palm Desert, California 92211
LISTEN, HEAR, AND FEEL
by Jerre Divelbiss
Listen to the lulling sounds of Mother Earth
as it softly plays it's songs.
Hear it and imagine the tranquility of life
that our forefathers must have
It was a land with a calm serenity,
a land where each new day
warmly embraces your soul.
A land kissed by the morning dew, and streams
sparkling with ripples
stirred by the Great Spirit.
Close your eyes and
hear, hear the sounds of silence.
A babbling brook, a roaring river, the
rustling of leaves,
the cry of the eagle and hawk, the howl of the wolf and
the singing of the birds and crickets,
and the soft heartbeat of
Close your eyes and see, see how blue Father Sky really is,
how majestic the mountains are,
how green are the valleys,
how serene and
cool are the lakes,
and how it feels to walk in soft spring grass.
your eyes and listen,
listen to the wind as it tells you of the earth's
as it warms your spirit and cools your soul.
Feel the sun as it
warms your face and lights your way.
All of these things should be as they were,
life at its best.
I will always
remember life as it was,
remember the sounds of silence
And I will listen,
see and feel.
Listen to Mother Earth's songs,
see Father Sky's beauty and
feel the voices in the wind
as they gently whisper the earth's secrets in my
Click for loon call.
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