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Saturday, May 24, 2014

Mr. Army Man

Yesterday I sent out an e-mail about following a prompt that has been floating around for a few days: May 21, 2014 Prompt: Write a letter to someone who served and died in any war between the American Civil War and the present.

Here is letter #1. It is to a living soldier. Please let me know what you think.

Dear Mr. Army Man,

Ah, I remember that was the name of the first poem I wrote about you back in February 2013. Only a few people (maybe only one person) saw it before a professor said the poem sounded too premature. I suppose it was - I met you the Monday after Nan died. She died on a Friday, at the end of January, during a big snow storm. I was reeling from that; maybe that's why I felt an attraction at first - something to kill the loneliness or just the confusion of what life would be like without Nan.

I suppose the first few weeks went well. You took me out and I had the opportunity to meet your friends. I think some of them liked me. They ribbed you a bit because I lent you my Packers hat (even though you're a Philadelphia fan, you didn't mind borrowing the hat), but you played along. Despite some awkward moments (me profusely sweating; yes, I even have hot flashes in 20 degree weather in February - and you forgetting my name: instead you called me Meghan), I thought you liked me because of the plans you made for us. You even braved the frigid weather to take pictures with me for my photography class - I still have those pictures and like to look at them sometimes.

Then it changed one weekend when you went away for reserve training. I didn't mention to you at the time that I was on medications and I was getting off of them. I'm so sorry for the withdrawal symptoms and worrying you over nothing during an important weekend. Things went to hell in my mind and we didn't talk for nine months.

I remember the first time we started talking again. I told you what happened and you took me to a shooting range to teach me self defense. You were really patient with me and a good teacher, I appreciated it. You treated me to the evening; just like the other times and I appreciate that too.

I feel bad that I haven't talked to you in a few months: between looking for work and trying to move takes a lot of time. To be honest, I've been rather sad about some of the outcomes and I figured you would be tired of listening to that from what happened last Spring. I guess it's just a weird limbo I'm in because I feel that way about talking about these issues with my Michigan/Midwestern friends; I feel stuck sometimes. I thanked you for your service last night on Facebook and you said I should thank the dead, but it should start with the living. Thanks for all you did!



  1. Yes, I remember you telling me about some of these events.

    1. Yeah... felt actually good to write a letter. Thank goodness this person will never see it!