For Our Fathers
by Alice B. Clagett 

Here is the spoken poem (1) :

photo by Alice B. Clagett, 2012

At first light, on the laid-back VA grounds --
      a land of not so well clipped lawns,
      and blooming jacaranda trees
      and blousy buildings, sprouted long before
            the first computer cast its eerie glow
                  upon the shadow that had been our history --

Old men wait for the bus, unmoored
            from the stale sameness of the working day, and
            all adrift in that sour sea we call ‘retirementÂ’.

 These are the once-sung heroes
      of the ancient wars,
      who fought for freedom on unfriendly shores

       and who, returning, found
            no peace of mind
            in a far too civil union,

      who wake, each night,
            dreaming atrocities
            dreaming the sloe-eyed death
                  of their personal dreams
                        on the altar of our nation.

 Now here they sit,
      this one nearly blind,
      and that one racked by gout,
      another, legless,
            wielding his wheelchair like a Grand Prix pro

 Each offering his friends the sweetest gift --
      a cheerful countenance
      to brave the gathering storm --

      and hoping, in his heart, that he may be
            finally on his way home
            to a land of perfect freedom.

 --a gift of love, May 2004

(1) The beautiful instrumental music in the video is by Chris Zabriskie,
from ... Mr. Zabriskie uses the
Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license to share his music worldwide.


photo by Alice B. Clagett, 2004

from "The Chalice and the Crucible"   Site home page: 2U3D

Creative Commons License
Except where otherwise noted, "The Chalice and the Crucible" by Alice B. Clagett is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.