It rained that day. It rained hard.
It was October. The ground was sodden.
We sat inside a glass-front pavilion / a cube of
despair / mourning. Rows of folding chairs
stood at attention. We waited for the honor guard.
Birds fell silent. Angels cried.
Thunder & lightning broke the calm.
They could not lay him in the
We wept, my brother’s family,
my mother by my side.
She ached from losing her eldest son.
No mother should outlive her child,
it is too painful to endure.
His wife and six children sat in front.
Standing in an unceasing downpour,
solemn and proud,
seven guards raised rifles high.
Eyes unblinking / a curtain of rain
flowed from polished cap visors.
Three volleys echoed eternal.
Twenty-one Gun Salute. A bugler played.
Reverie muted by low dense clouds.
Flag folded. The last salute.
As gun smoke settled
How can I ever forget that haunting sound?
Emotions so thick we could not breathe.
Tears that fell on that day
were harder than any rain.
Taps – the final salute.