is the orange i see
into the pulsing, green of things
or a time to
and know that autumn
always falls curling
the edges of sunshine soaked things
angled daylight spotlighting
a shade between
blazing red maples
and yellow aspen
waiting for the day
to the ground
grateful to become
in the spring
written for the One Word at a Time blog carnival, this week’s topic: orange.
“That night we moved into a field and I walked past a dead man. No one seemed to pay attention to the body and I assumed someone would later gather the poor guy in. In retrospect, it’s disturbing to recall how quickly we found ourselves able to look at dead bodies and, provided we didn’t know the man, feel very little emotion. That was a terrible realization, and yet to have reacted otherwise would have quickly drained us of the will to go on. Today I think back to that moment, the placid face of death, a kid, someone who had loved ones waiting at home, who had friends, not long out of high school, a kid with hopes and dreams, a person who that very day had smiled, had laughed at some childish joke, maybe written a reassuring letter to his mom. Now he was dead, lying uncared for along a nameless country road as one by one we walked by and turned quickly away. Now, shrouded in darkness, unknown, he lay there. No one should die that way. These are the photographs of the mind which dispel any idea of the romance of war.”
~Carver McGriff, infantryman in Normandy, recipient of a Bronze Star and two Purple Hearts, and author of Making Sense of Normandy: A Young Man’s Journey of Faith and War
Too few are left who fight.
Too few are left who stand.
Too few are left who push aside themselves . . . comfort, security, status, pride . . . for the sake of what is good.
What is right.
What is eternal.
Indeed, too few are my capabilities to string words together which adequately testify to the holy work of soldiers who fought for our freedom.
As I type uninhibited this morning, fair trade coffee brewing in my convenient coffee maker and belly full of breakfast, sounds of war movies play in the room next to me, where my oldest son will be all weekend, watching all the television greats: Band of Brothers; Letters to Iwo Jima; Flags of Our Fathers; Bridge Over the River Kwai, and many more. He watches and reads and memorizes the broken paths of fighters: fighters with faults; fighters admittedly scared s***less; fighters questioning; fighters enraged; fighters bloodied, but fighters all the same.
My son watches.
And I pray.
I pray he and his brothers will be a fighters, too, as their bodies lengthen and toughen and grow into men. Enlisted or on the front line of ministry or behind the closed doors of their future homes, I pray they will know the necessity of fighting for what is right.
Even when the rest of the world and everything against them appears wrong and impossible.
I pray they will be the sort of men willing to carry the wounded–impaled and dismembered and life flowing out of them–across fields humid with bullet rain and onto beaches, covered in the fog of injustice, and yawning with devouring fangs of evil.
The world needs soldiers.
Needs them, in the seconds which tick by and in the recesses of minds, to remember the brave ones who fell, bloodied, before us.
In the name of freedom.