Let me bid you farewell…

11. Brothers In Arms – Dire Straits                                                                When: June 6th, 1944

Before

He’d held a gun before:

Well before June ’44,

Bagging rabbits in the fields near his home.

He gripped it tight as the boat lurched on through the foam.

He’d run before:

Countless miles before the war,

Across grass, through woods; blood pumping, his heart.

Now his legs scrambled on sand as the beach blew apart.

He’d known friends before:

But not like the 48, this Marine Commando corps,

Bunkered under dunes; for respite, to hide.

O’Boyle, the Corporal, lay dead by his side.

I’d been to church before:

Usually head bowed, eyes fixed on the floor;

Not a believer in gods but respectful of men.

Especially one, that after the war, found peace with a Wren.

I’d remembered before:

Silly stuff – an accident, bowling a ball through his patio door

Or watching him wind up Grandma, a sparkle in his eye,

Perfected and practiced as their years had gone by.

I’ll remember again:

A silent two minutes for those lost and those slain.

And the quiet dignity of the man that I knew

Who never asked us for anything but that we live our lives true.

……

For my grandfathers: inspired by the one I was fortunate to know but not forgetting the one that, unfortunately, I barely had time with before he passed away.

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