Tuesday, March 20, 2012

On being a man.

It is found in Roosevelt's valor
And bounding gusto.
It is found in Frederick Douglass's
Coffee-colored courage.
It is found in trenches around the world
And throughout history
Where men took their stand
For their children and wives.
It is found between the scars
On my grandfathers side
Where Viet-Cong bullets
Tried to take his life
Because he stood for freedom
Because he stood for right.
All I have to my name
Are worn chuck-taylors, wrinkled t-shirts
And a heart to be half the man
That they were.
I've taken my oath,
And signed the dotted line
To defend my country,
My bookend,
And your rights.
I'm waiting my turn to stand with pride
Wearing the garment of honor,
The symbol of courage,
The graveclothes of many honorable men,
The uniform of freedom's defense.
I'm waiting the turn to make my last name proud
As my grandfather before me.
I'm waiting the turn to stand with honor high
Wearing the title of Private First Class
My badge of valor,
My accomplished prize.


  1. This is an excellent poem. Expectations and ambition colliding.

  2. Never lost and always found there to see, when one gives a look. Very nicely written.

  3. this is a beautiful rememberance to all that gave and give their lives for us...both men and women...

  4. To honour those who fight in the true name of decency, who NEVER believe in my country right or wrong, and who remember the all encompassing decency of Christianity and the openness of gods doors to all cultures....if that can be done amidst the brutalisation of army life then an affirming yes to this.

  5. These words spoken with pride and honor stand so firmly in their truthfulness. Your express so well the thoughts and ideals of those who know what it means to sacrifice life and limb for freedoms that we must take for granted.

  6. What a great poem. You're a credit to poets, your countrymen, and men in general. Great job!

  7. graveclothes is especially chilling.

    wars for freedom does seem oxymoronic. yet there are some who want nobody to be free, the bullies. what ya gonna do? tend your own garden well, i guess.

  8. A wonderful poem and tribute! Nicely done!