John L. Sarna

John Sarna served with the U.S. Army from 1952-54, attaining the rank of Corporal. He served in the Intelligence Corps in Trieste, Italy and was assigned to TRUST-HQ during the nine-year TRUST-BELFOR – British and American occupation of Trieste. John now lives in Las Vegas, Nevada


Today we laid him down to quiet rest
below… in the earth… now eternity’s guest

Yesterday, he struggled so to find a way
to soothe his soul, for life
sins to pay

While young, his life’s pages
were gold
they soon were dead… much
battered… cold

The battles were grim… death
reigned supreme;
he aversely slew, the kill
destroyed his dream

It was innocence vanquished
on the Ardennes ground of war
blood… mangled flesh… fleeting
youth gone forevermore.

There was no womb… no safe lair
in which to hide
fiery atonement took him down
its perilous slide.

Through years of twisted hours…
forlorn days
torment had seized him in its
woeful ways.

Into a chasm of unfeigned regret
downed… he fell… a sealed fate
he then met.

Lo… we buried him in that dust
cleansed… ripe… prime… his
body lay.

Accept him Infinity… press him
to your breast
allow him to join the brave warriors
already there at rest.

Sleep deep… good soldier… the
task is done
the conflict is over… your peace
is won.

Author’s Note: I dedicate this poem to my brother Al… who returned from the battlefields of France, Belgium, and Germany of WW II and spent the remainder of his life in veteran hospitals and homes. He never did enjoy the freedom for which he had fought or the freedom we enjoyed because of his valor and dedication.

His battle continued for the remainder of his days for he had lost his heart on those grounds of killing and too he had lost his lust for life.

PFC. Aloysius (Al) was inducted in 1944 and served in the U.S. Army until May 1946. He participated in the Battles of Ardennes, Rhineland and Central Europe as a rifleman 745 with Company K of the 385th Infantry. He was awarded the Bronze Star, Good Conduct Medal, American Campaign Medal, European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal, WW II Victory Medal, Army of Occupation Medal, Combat Infantryman Badge, Honorable Discharge Lapel Button WWII, Marksman Badge with Rifle Bar. Al died on Christmas Day, 1996.