Before now poetry has taken notice
Of wars, and what are wars but politics
Transformed from chronic to acute and bloody?
from "Build Soil"
Robert Frost

Friday, November 02, 2007


There was peace in the twilight / And for a moment or more
There was a world without danger / A world without war
And I would take all your suffering / If it would do any good
Cause we are one flesh / One breath, one life / One blood

I was with her a couple of nights ago, driving back from a weekend with the family. The sun was setting- the globe of it was crimson and hung low in the clouds. I found it odd that the clouds did not catch and tease the light like they normally do, taking on its color and spreading fleeting glory across the darkening sky. The sunset fascinated me me; I found it beautiful and captivating and terrible all at the same time.

I mentioned that it was similar to some I had seen in Iraq- I did not mention which sunset still haunts fading in my memory, the sunset that the other night was most like. I pulled off the freeway a few exits early and sat at the top of the ramp for a few minutes, quiet in my thoughts, and watching the sun slowly sink.

She looked at me and said "You miss it, don't you?".  She struck closer than she knew: at that moment I was remembering it, but not missing it.

I do miss it, and I don't.

I miss the rush- I miss the excitement of missions, of the hide&seek "treasure" hunt, the excitement of everything going right. It's an awesome feeling to go to sleep at night with all of your guys ok, a few more bombs out of the ground and a few more terrorists in it. 

I don't miss the boredom- the waiting for something to happen, the third time through The Simpsons because no one can sleep and our next mission is still a couple hours off.

I don't miss the way the "real world" intruded into Iraq. 

I wish I could miss the way Iraq intrudes into the real world.

I stood by the river / That ran red with shame
I stood in the killing fields / Where death had no name
I stood with my brothers / And awaited flood
And we were one flesh / One breath, one life / One blood

Then I fell to the ground / Tasted ashes on my tongue
Thinking that only the dead / Are forever young

Lyrics from Terence Jay - One Blood


  1. Are you sure you are a big tuff army dude? 'Cause you write like an angel (messengers of God).

  2. because of your insight, when I read your writings...i truly feel the hand of God on you. You're amazing, what you have endured is amazing and what lies ahead of you is amazing still... God Bless You!

  3. Anonymous2/11/07 22:19

    Great post.

    I knew the same feelings after Vietnam. Missing it and yet not. Sometimes I felt like I was two people. It takes time to bring the two together.

    Be well.

  4. Some sunsets hold a sickening beauty making it difficult to explain. Thanks for another good post...

  5. It's okay to miss it. But thanks goodness you're home safe.

    And thank you for your contribution...we're winning in Iraq now, and I'm optimistic we'll further consolidate freedom in the country.

    Enjoy the American sunsets. They're lovely.

  6. Ha! We influenced your music taste for once! :)

  7. The missing it is pretty standard. Robert E. Lee: "It is well that war is so terrible -- lest we should grow too fond of it." I found J. Glen Gould's "The Warriors: Reflections on Men in Battle" a help.

  8. Meagan, where did his tastes usually run to?

    I bet it was rap...

  9. I can't add anything worthy to what you've written...never done anything like fight a war in Iraq...

    I just wanted to say [again] how much I love like your posts.

    Thank you for sharing just a bit with the rest of us.

  10. Anonymous6/11/07 21:39

    Beautiful post. Take good care, TD.

  11. Anonymous26/2/08 10:24

    This post will now be added to my list of favorites of your work.. :)