Thurman P. Woodfork
WHO KNOWS WHY?
Old Moby, who was behind me,
probably thinking of his farm,
gave a grunt and slumped right
over, grabbing out for my arm.
His eyes were wide and puzzled
as he lay there on the ground.
Then they just sort of went out;
he was gone without a sound.
I found myself down beside him
clutching him in that muddy hole,
though the sniper didn’t fire again;
he was satisfied with one soul.
But in my heart was a dagger
he had buried clear to the hilt;
and for all the days that remain
to me I’ll carry a nagging guilt.
I know full well that it’s not my
fault, but I’ll remember to the end
how that bullet whipped right past
my head to wind up in my friend.
All the words of reason they tell me
Will never take away my pain,
nor all the wishes in the world
bring Moby back again.
So I’m left to grieve and wonder
why it came to be that night
that Moby’s eyes and not mine
dimmed and lost their light.
It wasn’t because I was smarter
a lot braver or more bold;
I ain’t built no great empires
or saved a thousand souls.
The only reason I can think of
why it’s him and not me that’s dead,
is because, at just the right second,
I simply turned my head.
©Copyright November 6, 2004 by Thurman P. Woodfork
This poem inspired the response “Who Knows Why?” – ©Copyright November 7, 2004 by Per Cod