Nancy L. Meek


Do not wait until the light goes
behind his eyes and furrowed brow,
grooved from remembering those
who didn’t make it back to now;
who, somehow, despite the years,
are seen hacking through brush,
jumping from skids, battling fears
with that needed adrenalin rush.

No, don’t wait until the light goes
to take his palm in yours today,
pump his arm until he knows
you mean each grateful word you say.
Thank him for fighting in your stead,
for that grievous road he bravely trod,
for the many times he fought and bled
an eye on the foe, the other on God.

It could have been you, you know,
facing the bloodshed every day
unable to sleep without a show
invading your nights in vivid display.
Yes, it could have been you here
missing bros who died back then
and if that’s still not crystal clear,
thank God for sending real men!