Monday, January 24, 2011

Liberty's Bells

Dad served on the Battleship New Jersey, during World War II.
Dad passed away in November.

The bands march by; the trumpet sounds;
The crowds applaud as the drum resounds,
But few see all the dreams arrayed,
As the boys troop by in a big parade.

There on the curb, few people see,
A faded remnant of gallantry,
As tired and old in tattered rag,
He salutes once more his Nation’s flag.

Ragged gentleman, spent and worn,
Shrouded in garments, frayed and torn,
But proudly pinned to his crooked frame,
Is a tarnished tag that bears his name.

Faded ribbon, medal bright,
Earned on a distant shore one night,
When soldiers to the last man brave,
Gave all, that freedom’s banner wave.

 History’s entombed on a faded page,
As youth and service succumb to age,
And all that survives are memories,
Of long forgotten gallantries.

But deep in one heart the pride lives on,
That coursed his veins that glorious dawn,
When men stood firm in crimson sun,
As dawn revealed new freedoms won.

Breast brimming with passion men won’t feel,
Who’ve never heard liberty’s bells to peal;
Who’ve never grasped a thankful hand,
Or bathed in the warmth of a grateful land.

But one recalls that glorious day,
Watching with glistening eyes of grey,
As bent and veiled in tattered rag,
He salutes once more that grand old flag.

November, 1976

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