Monday, July 4, 2011

Magical Moment 515, "What Raises a Hand?"

I wrote this short poem after reading a friend's facebook status. A Soldier herself, she is visiting D.C and typed this:

Unforgettable Moment: At the Vietnam Memorial watching a man touch his battle buddy's name while his hand shakes and says "There he is..."

"What Raises a Hand?"
By Elizabeth Grimes

What is it that compels a hand, 
To voluntarily raise,
And say "I will go and sacrifice," 
With no reward or praise?

Perhaps it is also what, 
(Once the uniform is donned),
Raises the soldier's hand in salute, 
Executing above and beyond.

It must be what I feel, 
When I hear "O say can you see."
My hand is pulled to my heart, 
Out of unwavering loyalty.

The same sentiment I saw,
When at a wall of stone.
He raised his hand to touch a name.
And said, "My friend, you're never gone."

"Vietnam Reflections" by Lee Teter


Dawn said...

Heart~wrenching and heart~touching.
A moving piece Elizabeth!

Linda said...

Vietnam was the war of my generation...the one that took young men of my age group. Those of us at home wrote to strangers who were serving in the military. We prayed for them. We cried for them when the letters stopped coming without explanation or when one of our own letters was returned, bearing the message that the recipient was deceased. I've never seen the Vietnam War Memorial in person, just pictures, like the one you posted. And I'm always moved by them. Your poem is lovely and poignant. Thanks for sharing it.

texwisgirl said...

really, truly beautiful...

Hilary said...

Beautifully written, Elizabeth. And a fitting post for today.

Daryl said...

A perfect poem (and picture) for today .. happy 4th!

Robin Malherbe said...

Very touching and beautifully written. Clearly very appropriate for the day.

Busy Bee Suz said...

This is just beautiful; compelling.
You are a wonderful writer!

Leontien said...

great poem! thank you for sharing

Rick said...

A beautiful and poignant tribute on Independence Day !