Call Me By Their Name

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Poetry  |  House: Booksie Classic

Silenced voices. Faceless shadows. Illusions of beautiful creations. The blossoms of a generation blooming in the enlightenment of man. Now forgotten lives and hallucinations of extinguished dreams.

CALL ME BY THEIR NAME

By Al Garcia

Silenced voices.  Faceless shadows.  Illusions of beautiful creations.  The blossoms of a generation blooming in the enlightenment of man.  Now forgotten lives and hallucinations of extinguished dreams. 

Extensions of me.  Their laughter, their jokes, their soft-spoken words, their anger, their fears as well as their dreams, their hopes, their loves and even their failures and their regrets. These were the things that young men shared.  The only things that made the nightmares fade into the darkness of anywhere but here was to share one’s heart and soul.

We are taught to fight and kill and stand our ground.  We were all young boys, 18, 19, 20 and 21.  Farm boys, city boys, and boys from in between.  White, brown, black, yellow and every shade in between.  Boys with southern drawls, Brooklyn accents, New York swaggers and a hundred more.  The one thing we were never taught was how to die. 

And in a blink of an eye, there is a sound you’ve never head, a hurt you’ve never felt.  It is a darkness you’ve never known.  A coldness you’ve never felt.  Big boys don’t cry.  Big boys just close their eyes and die.

Another thing we were never taught is how to feel when one of us is killed.  We hear the sudden scream of death and see the escaping soul from a fallen friend, and we are never taught how we should feel.  We can clutch the lifeless body of a fallen comrade in our arms and hold him to our heaving chest, and no one taught us how to feel when you sense the strength of life escape a fallen friend.  We walk away from the killing fields, once filled with the green of swaying grass, now crimson and muddied, and no one taught us how to feel.  I feel a wetness on my face.  It is the tears of fear and tears of loss.  It is the tears we were never told about. 

So many of my friends are gone.  They were like me, so young and carefree once.  I walked along with them through the Valley of Death in a time and in a place that still lives in the shadows of my mind.  But now I am alone.  Why them, I ask myself.  And each time I remember I hear their laughter, their jokes, their soft-spoken words, their anger, their fears as well as their dreams, their hopes, their loves and even their failures and their regrets.  I am them, so call me by their name.


Submitted: May 27, 2021

© Copyright 2021 A.Garcia. All rights reserved.

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