And When the Band Plays “Hail to the Chief,” oh, they point the cannon at you

Rupert Brooke

“The Soldier”

 

If I should die, think only this of me:
That there’s some corner of a foreign field
That is for ever England. There shall be
In that rich earth a richer dust concealed;
A dust whom England bore, shaped, made aware,
Gave, once, her flowers to love, her ways to roam,
A body of England’s, breathing English air,
Washed by the rivers, blest by suns of home.

And think, this heart, all evil shed away,
A pulse in the eternal mind, no less
Gives somewhere back the thoughts by England given;
Her sights and sounds; dreams happy as her day;
And laughter, learnt of friends; and gentleness,
In hearts at peace, under an English heaven.

            Yes, I realize that this is a poem about England, and not America, but the mindset of soldiers rings true throughout the world. This is a day in America that has become less and less emphasized in our culture. As we’ve had no major, life-taking wars on a World War, Korea, or Vietnam scale in the recent past, we quickly seem to forget just how important our veterans are.

 

Don’t forget!

 

            The problem is, those who remember Veteran’s day at all seem to think of it as a day of remembrance, but it is not that at all. Our day of remembrance is Memorial Day. On Veteran’s Day, you shouldn’t remember, you should ACT. So go out. Find a veteran and give them a hand, a hug, a handshake, tell them how much they’ve done for their country. And maybe, make their day a little better.

 

It’s not much to ask; after all, if it wasn’t for them, God knows what this country would be like.

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