Memorializing the Past

In memory of the many past Memorial days, here’s a glimpse of my thoughts at age sixteen, revealed through a poem I wrote after visiting Washington D.C. that year.

To the One Who Left the Rose at DC’s WWII Memorial

I saw dozens of gifts
at war memorials today.
It was Memorial Day,
after all. But somehow, yours
touched me most. A single,
long-stemmed red rose,
laid at the base of the plaque
commemorating Pearl Harbor.

Most of us don’t remember
that day anymore. It’s a date, a fact,
history. But to you, it must be
more—horror, sorrow, reality.
Did you lose someone
you loved that day? A father,
brother, husband, or son?

I wish I could tell you
I’m sorry. Not for the pain
you went through. But for
the way we’ve forgotten it.


Who did you remember this Memorial Day?

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