City Soldiers

The valley it glows
Like burning red coals
A furnace of fear and regret

The battle was old
But the pain scars still hold
Past the end for a man I’ve not met

Attention is called
While the wind whips us all
Eyes forward back straight no more tears

A boy says his prayer
For a father not there
A reminder of what we all fear.

City Soldiers

The East River swells and rolls,
while in squads of city soldiers
we fare well a brother fallen,
Winds winding off Jamaica Bay
bring raindrops that hide tears
of fearless men when they tumble from brims
of bowed heads.

Engines rumble like a distant army marching
toward a battle that is lost already.
Two by two on avenue they approach,
a great silverback escorting his band,
clearing a trail for the innocent dead.

We salute as one,
our fists white-gloved fury.
Only today we ignore the fight,
relieve ourselves the burden
of the ungrateful, giving us strength
to shoulder a brother’s share.