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Memorial Day

We are their survivors.  

There is not enough time to list all

The generous sacrifices made on our behalf.

I am startled awake by the thought—

we must find our civic sight or be lost.


They are the named and unnamed

Who did not wait until it was too late.

A man, a woman, a child.  Family, neighbor,

Friend--the stranger who never

Turned a blind eye, dreaming of sunlight

Flowing through golden fields

To keep our dream alive.

A lifetime comes and goes quickly.

Many serve, too many do not make it through

And died before their time.

Please do not ask their number.

I am looking for the language to learn

The song that honors their memory.

Alone I have a weak voice.

They are the convoys and the columns that

Moved ahead of us, day and night.

Through the years and the horrors.

You and I are here, survivors who got through

Because they prevailed before it was too late.

This message must get through.

Today we serve those who served,

And we wait to honor their memory.  

Who knows where we’d be without,

Or what would have come to pass otherwise.

Today we celebrate their service, and we

Honor their perfect gift before it is too late.

Stephen Cipot