Remembrance Day, November 11, 2022

Karen Radford Treanor 


Copyright 2022  by Karen Radford Treanor

Photo by Brett Sayles at Pexels.
Photo by Brett Sayles at Pexels.                   

It's Remembrance Day in Australia; Veteran's Day for some folks elsewhere. Few now alive have any memory of the First World War and its terrible cost, and a rapidly decreasing number have memories of the Second World War. It's not just the soldiers who fought who should be remembered. I think of my mother who, greatly pregnant, battled through a gaggle of geese to climb a fire tower daily to watch the skies for enemy planes which never came, but that doesn't diminish her offering. I wrote the following just after her passing; it seems appropriate today.

New England Graveyard

Three hundred years of Pilgrim bones

lie here among the lichened stones.

Here a boy soldier, dead in the morning

of a life that ended with little warning;

There a young wife and her babe of two days,

Bone cleaving to bone in the soil’s dark embrace.

Here my grandsire, beside him his wife,

And a tiny cousin who never knew life. 

These my mother now lies among,

her measure ended, a cut-off song

of a life untrumpeted, quiet and strong.

The world is reflected upon this hill

beneath the grey sky that mirrors still

the generations, long dead and silent

that sleep in death's deep and mossy salient.

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