In my small suburban town, Memorial Day, July 4th, and Veterans Day, bring flag lined streets. One morning a few years back, on my way to work, I had a moving experience driving one of those streets…later, I wrote this poem.
Memorial on Buford Highway
Once still flags begin to wave as cars drive through the flag lined street.
In my mind’s eye, I see old soldiers standing at attention and saluting something I cannot see.
As I continue driving past the long rows of flags and imagined soldiers, my eyes fill with tears.
I nod my head ever so slightly in recognition, and to honor their necessary and unnecessary sacrifices.
My father in World War II
My brother in Vietnam
As I leave behind the rows of flags and imagined soldiers, I sense there is a wisdom that comes with long death, much like the wisdom that comes with long life.