Grief, a poem by Gene Kimmet



Grief It was not the memory

Of all those years he toiled

In the fiery mills, feet numbed

By the winter walks to work,

Or that wall of silence that stood

Between us, or the stumbling words

Spoken over the dark pit.


It was the six old men who served

With him in the War to End All Wars,

Each past eighty, staggering under

That shrunken frame carried

To a hole in the ground.


It was their faces, pale and lined,

Their twisted limbs, their new

VFW hats perched on those old heads,

The palsied hands passing

The folded flag to the silent widow.


And the puzzled look in their eyes,

As if wondering how all this

Had happened, where the time

Had gone, and who would be left

To carry them.

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