If Poetry Could Raise the Dead

We forget too easily just what all those brave young men and women sacrificed for our freedoms. Decade after decade of ordinary, everyday life.


For Remembrance Day/Armistice Day/Veterans Day

If poetry could raise the dead
the earth would bleed where they had bled
to flow back into fallen soldiers 
who would rise, young and filled with wonder

and they would laugh and smile again
the millions, shaking dirt from tousled hair
turning unmarked faces to the sun
looking ’round to hug their friends

as well as former foes; gathering
to share a coffee, a schnapps, a sake
wondering which poet wrote the lines
which brought them back to life.

And leaning against the stone
they would gather to go home
strong and virile cobbler, butcher, Kansas boy
as all the nations wept with joy on their return

and they would work, create
have children, celebrate,
watch football, cut grass, harvest
live, love and die in their own bed

for if my poem could raise the dead
 your gentle Seiji, Hans, Yuri and Tom

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8 responses to “If Poetry Could Raise the Dead

  1. Many thanks for the re-blog! Regards

  2. If you enjoyed this marvellous poem, you should go to Toritto, (link above) and read some of his poetry, reminiscences and hard hitting views on American politics. Well worth the trip!

  3. This holds so much melancholy. So sad. Must we always have war?

  4. This made me feel sad John… too many sadness and death and I wish this poem could just be real, I wish poetry can raise the dead but if only wishes were horses…

    • Yes, you are right. Even at this festive season, the deaths and killings will go on. On a slightly more positive side, though, I do think that people are thinking a lot more before they commit themselves to supporting wars. I just wish that we had not rushed so blindly into involvement in the Middle East, which is a never ending source of misery for everybody concerned.

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