Faye Sizemore

MEMORIAL DAY

I heard the creaking of the old iron gate
Looking around I saw on old lady
Pushing her walker slowly ahead of her
And hanging from her walker was a wreath of flowers
She slowly made her way between the rows of stones
Finally taking the path to the Veterans’ spot
It took her awhile to arrive where she wanted to be
She stopped part way down under the flag waving above
Looking tenderly at the stones and silently reading every word
She stood for a few minutes with her head bowed
I knew she was praying, God willing, she would come back next year
Slowly and with an effort, she removed the wreath from the walker
And just as slowly bent to lay it tenderly upon the graves
With careful and measured step, she made her way back to the gate
Quickly I moved to hold it open for her and as she moved toward her car
Where her driver was waiting, seemly patiently, I remarked
How much easier it would be to have someone else lay the wreath
While she rested in the car and watched them do the honor for her
She told me her husband had been a soldier in World War II
Her two sons were soldiers in Vietnam and her short walk this Memorial Day
Was nothing compared to the price they each had already paid.