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Veterans' stories
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I Veteran

I try,
        Ten maybe fifteen years in a row to attend
It has been! I walk past at speed,
Anxiety rising within a throat of hurt,
My jaw clenched as I negotiate the crowd -
But my stride is slowed and I catch glimpses
Of the veterans in uniform,
And my tears are checked beneath
A stonewashed face.

        Pain comes in many forms,
The physical is just the physical but
The anguish of my spirit beckons
Solitary and silence and forgiveness of my soul,
        Why is it so hard to join them?
        Why can I not share my grief with those -
Who offered sacrifice?
Why is the eleventh hour of the eleventh day
Of the eleventh month so painful -
That I die inside every year the last post is sound
From a melancholy horn?

        I guess I may never know within the
Confines of my guilt,
        For as war beckons every lad - an adventurer,
There is a silent fortune of tears inside for the
Lives ceased so quickly,
And maybe,
        After all I have endured,
        And the fact Iím always there
        There bids an argument - A quarrel,
        That Iím so lucky to still be here alive,
        To be tending to my children,
                And still, be living life!

Michael J Waite 14th November 2010

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