I never intended on writing this poem. It is pretty sensitive in nature, but I feel it is necessary. I guess I will just let it speak for itself. There are many who will understand, probably more that will not. I am hoping you do. I also hope you like it.
The picture was my rig. I wanted a photo with me in it so bad. When the opportunity arose, another soldier snapped the picture. I didn’t realize it would be a silhouette. I was really disappointed. Looking at it today, I don’t think it could have turned out any more perfect.
This is for my brothers and sisters that had to deal, and still do, with situations similar to this. Thank you for your service.
Thank you for taking a look at “The Calmness of a Warrior”. It means the world to me.
The Calmness of a Warrior
Answering the call, giving it little thought,
Honor your country are the values he was taught.
His blood pump red, skin white, and mind blue,
Like generations before, this is what he was made to do.
From a child when he would hold his father’s hand,
Now patrolling a dangerous road, surrounded by hot sand.
Committed to freedom, honorably serving with others,
This, now his family, both sisters and brothers.
Each day, each mission on paper often look the same,
Moving out in the morning, before the sun becomes hot as a flame.
Was it a flash of lighting followed by deafening thunder,
Or something more sinister, making him wonder.
This day, this moment, there was a different feeling he did not share,
Time stopped for just a moment, as he was flown into the air.
His mind took him to church, where he was taught to do no harm,
And early Sunday dinners on his grandparents farm.
He thought of high school and wondered what his friends would say,
Making jokes and asking him, did you kill anyone today?
He thought of his dog, no matter what stood by his side,
If he were here, would have been next to him, begging for a ride.
Remembering homecoming and every high school dance,
Asking out all the girls when he knew he didn’t have a chance.
He thought, then forgot, eyes jarred open as he met the ground,
Metal torn from his vehicle was scattered all around.
He could see but not feel, move or hear,
Next to him lay his torn bandolier.
What he saw ,he knew, but did trust to believe,
The destruction before him was his vehicle hit by an I.E.D.
His body now slowly moved, but still could not stand,
Reaching for his leg and putting his pistol in his hand.
If you come for me to see if I am dead,
I will take this pistol and put a bullet in your head.
Confusion turned to rage, and fear for the others,
What drove him now was to check on is brothers.
From a gash in his forehead where his red blood bled,
Calling to his friends, not sure if out loud or in his head.
Every bit of energy crawling to once was their car,
It felt like miles, but he didn’t move far.
Where are you all, I need to know if you are hurt,
Hot blood dripped slowly onto his tan shirt.
None of this made sense, they drove a Humvee not a car,
And the roads here are made of sand, not concrete and tar.
A firm hand grabbed his shoulder and spun him around,
Pistol in hand, leveled his sights and drew down.
We are going to be late if you don’t wake up soon,
Wide open eyes, realizing he is in his own room.
Before him stood a smiling wife,
Another dream, a nightmare, of a past life.
So many years had passed between now and then,
But the years were like minutes, reliving it all again.
This woman, she cared for him, walking together a path to heal,
Uncontrollable horrors persist but together, learning how to deal.
Those days had made him something he was not,
The simple details of life were often forgot.
Once trusting others that they would have his back,
Was erased over time and bright days had turned black.
This woman, she also saw and felt the change,
Receiving the most fire from being directly down range.
Admiring her patience and trying to understand her love,
Explaining that so many visions, down deep he would shove.
She said I know, I am a volunteer too,
Remember the promise made when I chose to marry you.
I want you back, we will do it together,
These memories will always be there, but we can make it better.
Always on edge, instincts sharper than ever,
Feelings that can switch like a quick shift of a lever.
The flashing pictures and memories now being organized in his mind,
Always a soldier, now husband and father, learning again to be patient and kind.
Searching for peace, these dark memories have become inferior,
Stronger than ever, now the calmness of this warrior.