Charles J. Ingerson



Given the chance of life
the parade grounds fill
knowing ahead lies strife
having honor itself to instill.

Long lines march forth alone
each day unlike those before
how long and far from home
wondering if I’ll find the door.)

First Wrapping

Not even a year old
sometimes not a week
oft repeated this told
in whispers to speak.

Infants found to suffer
birth just too hard endured
whisking away from mother
feelings emotions injured.

Blue and pink blankets
shrouds soft and white
ribbons and angel valets
loneliness left in the night.

Second Wrapping

Older now and brave
energy to embrace quick
parents too slow to save
crossing a street or sick.

Hurtling the bloom soft
fevers burning as coal
spirits lifted slowly aloft
leavings grieving the soul.

Aging to five finding six
eyes clear and innocent
floundering unable to fix
still without armament.

Wrapping in soft blankets
favorite colors to view
curls with damp ringlets
clutching a Teddy or Pooh.

Third Wrapping

Wiser older now
but risks still unknown
cars racing to allow
dangers too late shown.

Phone calls hectic made
too late to understand
in caskets to be laid
answer unable to demand.

Warned and explained
wouldn’t listen to me
now in death detained
a feverish wish to be free.

Flowers and class rings
memories of friends gone
so many precious things
the future found anon.

Forth Wrapping

Life is full and complete
marriage and education
in the world to compete
upon this firm foundation.

So much looking forward
youth and petulance behind
carrying Gideon’s sword
finding others to be kind.

Struck a blow to finish all
children and infants cry
daddy, mommy they call
with no one to tell them why.

Photos and talks revered
friends gather too soon
in full bloom life severed
knowing this was only June.

Fifth Wrapping

Grandchildren to hold
relaxing a bit more at home
no more children to scold
even enjoying time alone.

Pain found in the arm
pounding in the chest
nothing thought to alarm
maybe need a bit of rest.

Sleeping really deep today
no longer able to awake
hearing voice far away
someone my body to shake.

Fading ever into dreams
never slept like this before
feeling lighter light beams
there again I see the door.


Given the chance of life
knowing some short
as if cut by a knife
then back again to report.

The parade grounds fill
headstones in lines of white
hearing voices while so still
missing them most at night.

Knowing ahead lies strife
struggles to regain understand
with questions fully rife
wondering why some demand.

Having honor itself to instill
generations have come to stay
each according to some will
some this transition to delay.

Long lines march forth alone
soldiers in an army grand
some again never to see home
lost forever as grains of sand.

Each day unlike those before
something new and some old
something true and some lore
each day another story told.

How long and far from home
will I wander this day to see
finding places made of stone
where one is captive or free.

My wrappings cadences in blue
drummers slowly tapping more
such is life thundering review
wondering if I’ll find the door.)