Mark I. Kirkmeyer

BATTLE OF INDEPENDENCE DAY

The second day of the battle falls into darkness igniting another round of volleys. The familiar cracks of rifle fire, whistles of passing artillery, and booms that accompany them are augmented by the distinctive aroma of burned gun-powder. Though heavily medicated with drugs from the VA and alcohol it is all I can do to prevent myself from reacting physically. That does not stop the autonomic system and the mind from reacting. Pulse and blood pressure rise causing already sensitive areas of the body to throb with the increased force. The scrapbook of my mind spews up random pictures long buried but not forgotten. With the pictures comes the feelings, anger, sadness, duty, terror, regret, suicide.

This is what Independence Day has become for me. From the day the tents begin to rise to the day the final firework is used. I relive those days and nights, throughout the world that caused so many emotions in me.