Blog 918 – 02.28.2018
A Final February Valentine
Today is the last blog for Love Poetry Month till next year if we tarry in this sphere but you do not need a special month to realize that you are loved for who and what you are and that is a very special, Valentine. And that is not just a funny sticker Valentine sentiment but as one of the many characters that Tom Hanks, such a versatile actor, plays in the movie Cloud Atlas says the, “True, true.” Or as Jesus put it according to the King James Version the, “Verily, verily.”
You are, we are all, someone and something very special everyday. It is still nice to be recognized as such but more important to realize ourselves that we are even when others might not seem to think or act like it. It is always a mistake to let anyone else define you. For so long the financial and powerful few have tried to define the rest of us as “less than” and pit us against one another. I used to marvel being a poor boy from the South at the effrontery of the rich, powerful, slave holding plantation owners and at the ignorance of the poor white southern boys they convinced to fight and die to maintain their status quo which was the few on top of the pile on the backs of black slaves and poor white folks and everyone else. (And the same was true of the of the greedy Yankee mill, plant, and factory owners who employed mainly poor emigrants at slave like wages with little if any benefits and even conned them into going to war in their sons’ places for a small price.) All so terrible and amazing and yet I volunteered for the Army knowing full well I might have to go to Vietnam and I did, a war that created more millionaires in the U.S. at the cost of over fifty-five thousand U.S. servicemen alone many of whom were black, Hispanic, or poor white boys like myself. Guess I was not so smart either. I see it all happening again as rich men plan another war to make themselves and their friends even richer and a lot of poor folks even more poor and also missing sons and daughters for the cause of “Patriotism.” A folded flag, pretty even as the U.S. flag, is nothing any thinking person would trade a child for. Every child is special and war destroys so many. But the rich get richer and the poor lose their children.
Instead of a new poem to close out the month of February, Poetry Month at:
I will repeat a verse I have used several times from a poem I wrote in Vietnam as a nineteen year old soldier. The poem was published in the U.S Army Stars and Stripes Newspaper In 1970, my year in South Vietnam. Here is the verse I most remember.
Oh, that men did not war
And mothers did not cry
That lovers did not part
And soldiers did not die.
War kills so many others besides just soldiers, all sweethearts and special valentines too.
Your friend and fellow traveler,