Clouds on Memorial Day
Updated: Nov 16, 2020
As the sun sets upon, or below, a pale blue middle American skyline I am conflicted. Through the quiet chatter of the radio, the dim hum of the television, and the bright colors strewn across the newspaper, today is a day of nationalism, a day of remembrance, and a day ultimately of reflection for me. I see the young faces of those whom, through an oath of service, have dedicated and sacrificed their lives in the end paying the most expensive bill we could ask of them.
I see the plastic shine, photo shopped to perfection, and stretched to a taught message of pride over billboards staggered along the mindless bustle of the expressway. These messages remind us of the soldier and the constant need to fill vacated seats, empty cots, and lonely rifles. I think of the people stopping to thank and shake the hand of a soldier in various forms of dress not knowing that there might have been little option for this person. Intense poverty, lack of citizenship, and promises of short tenures followed by cheap college or citizenship may weigh down the mind of a soldier that shakes that hand. Stoic eyes with an empty smile, not wanting to interrupt a moment of a prescribed soldier worship in a culture of perpetual war.
I honor and love the men and women who seek to better the world, who value the dedication and necessity of defense through an increasingly cloudy political environment littered with holy hands and mega corporations bleeding green blood into the boots of soldiers who only wanted to protect their family, country, and flag.
I feel a dark cloud just beyond the reaches of the natural beauty of my little sunset, the light giving its last few efforts to reach the sanctity of my home. I feel the cloud coming, coming to send more best friends, brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers, and yet unknown children to the cutting boards of greed, self service, and blind ambition. I just want you to remember who is sending our proud soldiers abroad, remember to question why they say its unavoidable, and remember the lack of emotion with which the machine of war and irrational hatred will continue to create open lockers with fresh tags waiting.