A V-shaped gash cut deeply in the earth
Black granite walls that barely can contain
The dates of death, no less the dates of birth
Each letter marks a place that can remain.
Mourn, mourn until your tears are nearly spent
Your boys, your sons, will never see this soil
Their youth, their blood, a shattered nation lent
To jungle war we sanctioned, then recoiled.
Descending slowly, shedding words and sound
The walls are wings that lift us from despair
The names are weights that slam us back to ground
No matter which our witness holds repair.
I touch your chiseled name, recall that hour,
I leave your leather boots, a flag, a flower,