Welcome to my World

Welcome to the domain different--to paraphrase from New Mexico's capital city of Santa Fe which bills itself "The City Different." Perhaps this space is not completely unique but my world shapes what I write as well as many other facets of my life. The four Ds figure prominently but there are many other things as well. Here you will learn what makes me tick, what thrills and inspires me, experiences that impact my life and many other antidotes, vignettes and journal notes that set the paradigm for Dierdre O'Dare and her alter ego Gwynn Morgan and the fiction and poetry they write. I sell nothing here--just share with friends and others who may wander in. There will be pictures, poems, observations, rants on occasion and sometimes even jokes. Welcome to our world!

Monday, November 11, 2013

A Very Significant Day!!

Today is variously called Remembrance Day, Armistice Day and Veteran's Day. It originally marked the ending of World War I (armistice), now almost a century into the annals of history with many larger and smaller wars happening since. The sixties protest song comes yet to mind "When will they ever learn?" Humanity seems to be contentious, rapacious and much too prone to violence as the solution to any disagreement.  It appalls me.For example, this last Friday two high school football teams got into a brawl on the field. The officials shut down the game and it is a forfeit for both teams. What is wrong with us?

But, those sentiments aside, I still honor and revere the courage folk who don the uniforms and go into danger when it is asked of them--from the American Revolution and even earlier to the current conflicts in various parts of the world. The best defense is still apparently a good offence at times or at least an obvious willingness to draw a line and hold it. I do not approve of this but for now there does not seem to be an alternative, so those who man that line have my heartfelt gratitude and support--regardless.

I no longer am active in the VFW Auxiliary or similar organizations but I carry those memories with pride
and am glad I did my bit when I did--handing out the little "buddy poppies" and collecting donations for aid to veterans and their families; marching in parades and taking part in ceremonies on various patriotic and military commemorations and working in my community for the good of all, as best I could. All of that is a part of my past that I feel good about. Here is a shot of me in the uniform worn by the color guard of VFW Post 10342. A National Commander visited us and told us that to the best of his knowledge ours was the only such group with both Post (actual vets) and Auxiliary (spouses, daughters etc) in a single unit with the exact same uniform. I was normally the "offiicial photographer" but I did march in some parades and carried the Auxiliary banner most of those times. My late husband was the captain and 'drill instructor' for most of that time and managed to get me to kinda march, two left feet and all!!

And last, a poem I wrote for the first Veteran's Day ceremony I took part in as an Auxiliary member.

Veteran's Day
I hear the drum roll in my mind
and then I see, before, behind,
the Silent Legions marching past
to join the Great Parade, at last....

From Flanders Fields and Iwo's sands,
from nameless near and distant lands
where they have fought and bled and died
for to uphold the Nation's Pride
and secure the Peace and Liberty
today enjoyed by you and me...

Each heart with praise should overflow
and gladly search for ways to show
that we remember and we care
and at least in spirit share
their sacrifice, their gift, their pain.
We know they did not die in vain.
The torch still burns: we carry on
 the flame kept bright by those now gone.
 They're marching still, they're fighting yet;
 and so must we...lest we forget.                 GMW, Nov 1986

Author's Note on Veteran’s Day:  Written for a tribute for Veteran's Day and first recited at a ceremony held by VFW Post 10342 and its Ladies Auxiliary on 11 November 1986 in Huachuca City, Arizona.  Permission granted to use at no cost for any patriotic purpose supportive of the sentiment in which it is written with credit of authorship to be given.  Published in an anthology by World of Poetry,   GMW

A footnote: The final phrase is a conscious and sincere homage to Kipling's powerful poem on a parallel theme which ends, "Lord God of Hosts, be with us yet, lest we forget. Lest we forget. I'd have to check but I think it referenced the Crimean War. I'll research and post that later. Kipling is a hero and inspiration of mine--loved all his work. GMW.

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