Flash Fiction–In or Out

In or Out?

From his wheelchair, Bob reached for the doorknob and dropped his hand.

Jay, his caregiver, leaned over his shoulder. “Aren’t we going in?”

“I can’t face them.” Bob looked at his legs. “What will they think of me, now?”

“As the strong man they knew and loved,” Jay said.

Bob shouted, “Look at me. I can’t walk into the room. Turn around,” he snapped. “We’re out of here.”

“Tough,” Jay said. “We’re going in.” He pushed Bob to the door.

Bob turned the knob and heard cheers from the men in the room. “Welcome back, coach.”

Margaret Leis Hanna
Central Ohio Branch, OH

Thank you to all our veterans who served our country and our freedom.

Flash Fiction–The Wounds of a Soldier

Wounds of a Soldier

He was trained to stare into the eyes of others and watch the blood run out.
They devoted his thoughts to the historic idea of killing at any cost.

When he returned home, he was called a hero. They drained him with saluted salutations and hooked him on oxycontin, clorapan and opiates, which eventually led to heroin on the streets.
“We become wounded in the soul,” he said. “Something no drug can fix.”
He told me once that no one should ever come back alive, no one.
That the true mercy of war would be if no one came back alive.

DIANNE LYNN BENANTI
PALM SPRINGS BRANCH, CA

Poem of the Week–Differences

Differences

Don’t divide the people, we insist…
There is a way, to peacefully coexist.
But still I see two sides concerning this.
What is power up to will they tell?

As mountain peaks await the sunset bell
and darkness captures either side of dawn
the sun appears alternatively gone;
night and day change sides and disappear
for us to follow, in our wake of fear.

Sophie Barnes
Connecticut Pioneer Branch, CT

Memorial Day Poem

Rest Peacefully

Once they floated in mothers’ wombs
Now interred
In well aligned tombs
Though much life
Meant still to live
Their lives
For our country
They did give
They lie beneath
Our sacred soil
Because man can’t live
Minus knife and foil
Now cannons and rifles
Rattle the calm
I.E.D.’s
And horrific bombs

Rest peacefully
Under flowers
And flags
And long after
Due to the weather sags
They who died
For their blessed land
Are held tightly
By the good Lord’s hands
*
Happy Memorial Day
For all those who died for the USA
Barb Whitmarsh

Editor’s note: This poem was due to go up on Monday, May 25, but as many of you may know, I live in Houston and Monday and Tuesday were not ordinary days here. Prayers for all those affected by the storms and floods. We are fine and our hearts go out to those still recovering from losses.–Treanor Baring

Click here to visit our competitions page to learn more about our Vinnie Ream Medal competition, postmark deadline June 1, 2015!

Poem of the Week–Armistice


Armistice

I pass the long train
as it waits, unmoving,
each flat car carrying military vehicles —
armored tanks with caterpillar tracks,
long gun noses extend into air —
the kind of transport we only see on the news
rolling down the streets of Baghdad,
Helmand province,
Tiananmen Square,
right here in Ceres, California,
and for a minute it jolts me,
all the more ironic
since it is Memorial Day weekend
and this looks like an invasion,
tank after tank after tank,
gray green gigantic Tonka toys
that have played for real
in the game of war,
not raw recruits
but old war horses,
veterans,
hopefully on their way
to some kind of resting place
where they will be honored
for their service,
never used again

Nancy Haskett
Modesto Branch, CA