Monday, May 31, 2010
Remembering the dead, for the living will take care of themselves or at least have the opportunity. Those dead we piled up under plastic or worn blanket and shelter halfs, those dead we couldn't move fast enough nor dig individual holes for the numbers of them that no longer had to face the guns and artillery of the enemy - his dead giving us no satisfaction, they didn't count anymore. We had dead we couldn't piece together, not knowing if this part was his part or his part, some dead weren't enough parts to be someone we knew and that makes them harder to remember. We once had unknown soldiers, corpses we had no idea - we honored at least one per war until we decided we could tell exactly who they had been by DNA. We still get MIAs, missing in action, for with all the technological improvements that allow the White House to be in the middle of every military action anywhere, the enemies we send our best to fight against are still lucky or sometimes a bit better. They the dead we need to remember and honor today, for they gave up life and love and laughter and all they had worth being for our nation and whatever the popular or unpopular cause was at the time. We need to take care of our dead, raise up their children, support their families and find that better future we believed in with them. Okay, I must confess, that in a certain mind numbness I have sat beside the dead and eaten my rations and drank a poor substitute for hot coffee almost as tired as they were, just a bit more alive. Most of the numbness was in the acceptance of their departure from my world, critical portions of my existance in the time before, the yesterdays and the feeling of can take on anything - depended on their strength, their skills and their supporting laughter for the stupidity of the moments of terror and troubles. Why does Gospel, Blues and wailing bagpipes come to mind as I remember the dead, because their angels gather them in with music playing? Honor the dead for they were better than we will ever be, God took them first and we still have to prove ourselves.