Post-Memorial Day Poem

My classmate, Mary Lou Meyers, is my poet without portfolio for Menupause.  Here is a poem I wish I had before Memorial Day, but still worth reading, since many of our soldiers are still  fighting a war somewhere. (Another one tomorrow for post-Mother’s Day that I found when de-cluttering my writing area.)


Lest We Forget

Small town America does it best on Memorial Day

with gold stars touching their roof tops;

with poppies sold by former vets,

even with Fife and Drum Corps on parade.

Not just American Flags flying in the breeze

but names and faces from every branch of Service

in between, prominently displayed in their uniforms,

as those who loved them most remembered them

with biographical notations and occasional quotations

whether down a shaded avenue in Oxford

or Main Street in Quarryville.

These are towns you might pass through

without a glance,

except for the chance meeting of Amish buggies

or if you decided to stop,

an air of friendliness, even from the Manager

of the aptly named Goods Store

where the customers’ needs are easily understood,

where they greet each other as if a long-lost relative.


Their identity easily remembered too,

for they came from open houses and friendly streets

where people are what they seem.

For the town is truly invested

in each young man or woman

subject to the call of their country’s distress

having passed the test of time and endurance,

even under the duress of the firing line.

Heroes all, these Home Town kids:

neighbors remember well the little girl

around the corner selling lemonade;

he might have broken a few rules in school,

but a prime applicant for a job after High School;

or the home-town jock, whose prowess in baseball or football,

or better yet a merit  scholarship, or best of all the one,

who decided to rear his family

right here on the street next door to you and me.

Here the greetings are personal, not just “hi”

but “glad to see you up and around!”

“Can I help you out?’ Knowing someone was floundering

in the last snow storm or because they are down

to their last cent, and instead of counting them out,

someone is there to spare  their doubt

life is truly worth living.


What were their final parting words,

their final parting thoughts,

surely they were of family and friends,

and letters that said, “I miss you all!!”

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