Thurman P. Woodfork


I wonder how the former enemy copes,
now that our war is done;
does he suffer bouts of melancholy
or dream of battles lost and won?

Does a bone deep mantle of depression
settle ‘round his shoulders like a cape
as he eases his way through the jungles
of his mind seeking a way to escape
from the never-ending horror of
memories that will not fade?

Does he, too, think of friends’ bodies
lying riddled in a glade?
And is his sleep troubled by the
shadowy, stalking shade
of a foreign soldier who pursues him
down a gloomy jungle path
or waits in ambush to trap him in a
deadly unleashing of wrath?

Is there a ‘Wall of Heroes’ that can
ease his mental pain
and slow the recollections that
march unbidden through his brain?

When the velvet night comes softly
to cloak the terrain from view,
does he stir in his sleep uneasily –
is that ‘demon’ in his dreams actually you?