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Saturday, March 18, 2006

Thank You Soldier: A Poetic Tribute

This weekend, as we remember the continuing sacrifices of our soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines involved in Iraq, I'd like to share a poem recently sent in by Chris Woolnough. You'll find her ode to our fighting men and women, a link to the writer's online bulletin board, and links to more poetry shared at PTSD Combat. Please send or post in comments any poems you'd like to share as well. And thank you, soldier.

Click on 'Article Link' below tags for more...

Thank you Soldier
By Chris Woolnough

Have you stopped to thank a veteran today?
For the price of freedom they had to pay?
Did you gaze into those distant eyes?
Did you see the ghosts he can't deny?
Did you think a soldier's heart was made of steel?
Because he was trained to kill, he couldn't feel?
Did you see the guilt written on his face,
For the loss of life he can't replace?
Did you know he mourns the lives he couldn't save,
And walks with comrades in their grave?
Did you remember the boy with innocence lost?
Do you really know war's ultimate cost?
Have you felt the blast of artillery fire?
Do you have the courage it would require?
Have you stood in trenches consumed with fear?
Felt the enemies breath so very near?
Have you walked with God on a battleground?
Seen your brothers dead or dying all around?
Have you stopped to thank a vet today,
Or did you just turn and walk away?
From the pain he'll carry for the rest of his life,
Did you consider his family, his children, his wife?
That watch him suffer in silence each and every day,
As he's haunted by memories that don't go away?
Did you care that the soldier is still pulling guard?
That his heart, mind, and soul will forever be scarred?
Do you know how he suffers from ptsd?
Or that our precious freedom is never free?
Do you care that he still hears the blood curdling screams?
Or that he returns to the war each night in his dreams?
Have you felt the sorrow of a combat vet?
Or would you rather just forget?
That war has pierced his hardened heart,
And torn this soldier all apart?
Would you rather our heroes just fade away?
Or will you stop to thank a vet today?

Please visit Chris Woolnough's online community at The Aftermath of War, Coping with PTSD. You'll find "a safe haven of support for those whose battles live on in The Aftermath of War." Thank you, Chris, for sharing your poetry with us and extending your services to so many appreciative people over the years.

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