Why I don’ go to the traveling wall … a memory poem

I was then just a boy …
Life to me was a toy …
Years do little to the sight …
Of brothers lost in worthless fight …
But if you choose come ’round each year …
Remind me ever of my fear …
Remind me of how I cried …
As in my arms he bleed and died …
Remind me of how close I came …
To my death in that game …
Like my friend from childhood …
Who disappeared from where he stood …
Leaving me in red rain …
With gray on me that was his brain …
If you choose come ’round each year …
I know your motives are sincere …
But don’t look for me I won’t be there …
I’m a one the wall did spare

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12 thoughts on “Why I don’ go to the traveling wall … a memory poem”

  1. Thanks, Bud! There is no such thing as bad poetry, some is just better than the rest, and this is good poetry. I have been very fortunate to have visited the actual wall on many occasions and each time is a very moving and different experience. I always visit the Traveling Wall whenever it is close because of the different people met at each visit. Say their names, they will never be forgotten. Semper Fi!!!

  2. If the wall is so difficult to visit, go to a cemetery out in the country, a small cemetery of but 200 souls, in the middle of wheat and cornfields. A quarter mile from the little church my friend belonged to. Visit his grave some quiet morning, birds flying overhead, twenty miles from the nearest highway, all alone in the country. AND THINK??? A young man who gave his life, shot down over Vietnam who had a future that we will never know. A real patriot, the purple heart on his tombstone, my friend, a 1st Lt in the USMC. May he R.I.P. And yes, his name is deservedly on the wall.
    Semper Fi

    1. Virgil – I often visit three of my brothers at Ft. Gibson Veterans Cemetery near Muskogee, Oklahoma. It’s a very historical place with graves dating back in the 18th century. It is also where I will rest when that time comes. Semper Fi!!!

      1. TOP Prothro,
        As a Veteran’s Chaplain, I will be conducting a Military Graveside Service
        at Fort Gibson National Cemetery this coming Tuesday the 21st. Burying a friend of 30 years. He was in the Navy 1973-1976, I the Marines 1976-1982.
        SEMPER FI.
        SSGT. Tony Woconish

        1. Tony – What time tomorrow? I have a Doctors appointment at 10:30 in Tulsa, but if it is afternoon I’ll try to make it. Hope you get this in time, let me know. Semper Fi!!!

  3. My self my son both marines. My father army. My brother army. Dads in Bourn military burial cemetery. My son and I visit Gramps as he calls him.
    My brother Vietnam vet passed away here, but died over there. A needle in his arm to take away the pain. No grave stone to visit no wall to see his name, memories just memories. Love u Kenny. SEMPER FI

  4. The message of this poem is very poignant for all who visit The Wall. I do feel that we who served should Never Forget those who never came home. Semper Fidelis!

  5. Our first visit to The Wall in DC was with two WWII, Korean & VN Marine brothers during a Mustang reunion; at the end of the walk and when we were able to converse, there was a mutual feeling of absolute absence of emotion. Not being a psychiatrist or psychologist I do not understand; however on several subsequent visits, it was quite different.

  6. I was called to be one of my childhood friends’ honor guard when he fell in VIETNAM. He was the first of what was to be to many of my friends and brothers to pay for in blood the honor they felt to serve our nation. I feel now they have been betrayed and though I suffer with their lose and cry over their memories, I have a tough time allowing myself to be subjected to the public ridicule of those who did not serve and have NO IDEA what it means to view the WALL, moving or otherwise. I at one time stood post duty for the moving WALL when it was brought to ANN ARBOR, Mi. with others of VIETNAM VETERANS OF AMERICA Post # 259. I have visited the WALL in D.C. with a couple of my brothers whom I served with in the MARINES a couple of decades ago. I can’t see me doing that now and I hurt NOW|

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