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epitaph

As they threw dirt into the grave, a flag was handed to me

A final remembrance of his life and his love for this country

For only a moment I looked at that flag and I held it in contempt

For this he fought, for this he died, for this is why he went

The war he fought, in Vietnam, ended so long ago

I thanked the Lord when he came home, but God, I didn't know

That his days were numbered, he was sentenced to death by this country he loved so

 

My son forgive me, the feelings I felt the day we laid you to rest

Feeling that flag against my hands was so hard, so final, so cold

This country denied you dignity and honor each time they denied your claim

They denied you were dying, denied their fault, denied they sprayed you with death

And when you were gone they came to stand by your side

To honor your death when they refused to honor your life

I no longer feel contempt for that flag, especially now as I sit by your grave

The marble so cold under my hand as I feel the etched lines of your epitaph

Which simply states, as you requested, "For God and Love of Country"

 

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