Anthony W. Pahl


They walk in rancid filtered light of jungles, in their minds
While dingy shafts of sunlight reveal death and fear’s design.

But dappled sun through cherry trees illuminates their troubled minds
And the softness of the morning sun holds peace and calm sublime.

Rotted boots and rotted leaves – smells of terror and despair
Memories of rubber trees with cuts that time cannot repair.

But the scent of cherry blossom permeates all life that’s in the air
And the newness of the present eases pains of all past cares.

Senses sharp, then burned away in the times of youthful war
The adrenalin of fear and danger ~ pus in a running sore

Quiet minds and quiet prayers for those who went before
Salty tears heal and cleanse wounds deep within their core.

Now they have a place to go to recall with joy and tears;
and a place where they can go to rest their ancient fears.
Now they have a place to go to say a fond farewell
and a place where it’s possible to allow sad hearts to dwell.

And Cherry Tree Walk will be found in the hearts of all good men
For Cherry Tree Walk is not a dream; it’s where healing can begin.

Anthony W. Pahl: Cherry Tree Walk
Cherry Tree Walk Vietnam Veterans Memorial
Bowral, New South Wales, Australia