Do the fallen remember?…


  Do the fallen remember?
I remember my father, held on to the rum and he held on to the memories of the Korean war blood. I would stay-up with him and I would help him walk to his bed. He told me often, my son. I killed and I killed, son. I couldn’t kill enough to save my good friends John and Michael.
I remember three times when I was a boy, my father drank his rum and we would load the car. He wanted to visit his friend in California. He was drunk and we would make it half-way to Chicago and he would fall asleep. I would watch him sleep at a rest stop. We finally made it to California when  I was in the service and we visit his friend grave. Simple words written on the grave. Boy turn to man, a boy left for war and a soldier returned home to rest. Remember I lived once. My father and I drank beer by his grave in silence and I saw in my father’s eyes. War remembered and a goodbye needed.
I stood in a graveyard outside of Paris. 50,000 white markers, a World War two graveyard. I read names of men, who cannot speak no-more. I wonder what they would say? Most were just boys and young men. Just beginning to live and now I stand in the field of silence. I hear whispers. Please no-more war.
I left war un-marked, my cold heart didn’t know the mercy of burden yet. One day, good friends started to fall in Iraq in the new wars. War found me at home in Michigan and I learn my father’s sadness. I sat by a good friend grave, killed in a far-away war. I told him. I am with you my good friend, I haven’t forgot your smile and your laughter. I tell your children often. How much you loved them. They are beautiful and Megan is a mama now. The boy looked like you. I drink my friend favorite beer, Miller lite. I leave three cans by his grave-stone. I asked the sky. Do the fallen remember?
                                     Dancing Coyote