Soldiers

300 straight kilometers heading due West. Highway! Not the sidestepping foot traffic of the trottoir, not the squashed human packaging in the dank metro air, no shepherding by a clicking train timetable — but the flight and freedom of a car!

The substitution of an m for a k makes average feel like speed and so we  s p e e d  past distant church spires spotted over fields neon green from new growth and rain, marking sleepy towns that elicited idyllic exclamations from eyes accustomed to the white stone and béton of a bustling city — towns whose shutters shade hooded eyes that surely look just as longingly over the same fields at the liberation of the same highway.

The pavement carried us to the final rendezvous point, in reverse of the muddy path of our comrades. We come over the land; they came over the ocean.

We step lightly from a paved lot and ambled through thrashing wind, wrapped in scarves and sweaters where they had sloshed through the waves, fought to live forward an inch, caked in pounds of salt and sand and metal as they squelched over the beach and fell on the dunes.

They saw brown and grey and rust (if they noticed the colors at all among the dust and smoke and blood); we see green and blue and gold (and were mesmerized by the flora and sea and sand).

2014-03-22 14.34.55

They imperatively
had no thoughts but for the moment.      We impossibly
try to conceive of those moments.

Many of them stayed;

all of us leave.

 

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One comment

  1. Lovely. Evocative. Tugs at the same place in my heart that brought me to tears a few years back. Amazed by the beauty, jolted by the sacrifice. Glad you were able to experience it!

    Like

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