Above us…for dVerse

Posted: November 5, 2014 in Poetry
Tags: , , , ,

Grace at dVerse challenges us “to write from the perspective of the dead man (or woman).” Here’s my poem. My photo is, I admit, from WWII, but it’s closely related and WWII figures into my poem, albeit obliquely.


Above us

“In Flanders field the poppies blow…”

And grow, too
            (as well they should
            given our bones and flesh and blood 
gone to fertilizer)

gone to grow
          not peace 
          but yet more war
another layer of human fertilizer
    above us

When will they ever learn?

No doubt 
“Man” being what he is

But there are things worth fighting for
and so we gave our all
      (and cheered those left behind
       to live and grow 
   above us)

  1. Your last line. Oh my, so terribly true.

    • While there are things worth fighting for, there’s hope in the world. But then ISIL has things they think are not only worth fighting for but worth killing thousands of innocents for, so I guess even that is up for debate.


  2. Grace says:

    No, we will never learn but I agree, there are things worth fighting for ~ I love that poem, a fitting tribute to our Remembrance Day ~

    Thanks for linking up with D’verse Janet ~ Wishing you a happy week ~

    • Grace, it’s almost Veteran’s Day here, too, but I wasn’t thinking of that. Always glad when something works serendipitously, though. 🙂 You have a great week as well.


  3. Mary says:

    Seeing the crosses reminds us of the many who have died fighting the good fight. Though there are things worth fighting for, the reality is hard. Your ending was thoughtful – yes, we all live on, thanks in part to the sacrifices of those who died for our freedoms.

  4. Gabriella says:

    Too many people have died in our too human wars, but in some cases the cause was just not debatable.

  5. claudia says:

    when will they ever learn…? brought that song to my mind… i too doubt we ever will.. too many have lost their lives already…

  6. vbholmes says:

    Very hard to imagine the human race (or, perhaps I should say, life, in general) without conflict–as far as we know, it’s always been there. Poignant piece, Janet.

  7. Sadly true….”man being what he is”….I wonder what would happen if women were the leaders in resolving conflict. Just a thought.
    Nice write. 🙂

  8. Nice poem. it gives us much to think about. 😀

  9. Glenn Buttkus says:

    War is tragic, but the global strife force fed to us by the media ad infinitum takes the focus off how many of us die from the flu every winter, from car accidents, from smoking, from poor diets, from mental illness pressures, from despair, from abuse, from murder–none of it pretty, none of it acceptable, but for every one who passes, two more are born; such is life as we know it.

  10. Myrna says:

    I know the reality, it’s tragic. I like to keep a little door open to possibility though. Just maybe someday, a million years from now… war won’t be even if conflict exists. We could resolve differences differently. I like to dream.

  11. Those two quotes from well-known songs and poems are so well done.. yes there are things worth fighting for.. I think so too.. but I often wonder if we could have avoided it by acting earlier….. peace require constant work…

    • That’s a good question, Bjorn. Hitler was voted into office; dictators are often elected or take power by force. In Hitler’s case, perhaps if Chamberlain and others would have acted sooner…but then we don’t know what Hitler’s reaction would have been. Peace requires hard work and sometimes requires war.


  12. brian miller says:

    i hope that we can one day learn a better way and not perpetuate the violence…perpetuate war…and continue adding another layer of fertilizer….

  13. Justin Lamb says:

    War is both heroic and tragic. At times a necessary evil, at other times an excuse for those in power to control what they want. No matter the reason for a war, those who fight for freedom and for better lives for others are heroes in my book.

  14. Bodhirose says:

    That last line makes me think that those who sacrificed themselves did so willingly in spite of the pain that their passing caused. This topic can be endlessly debated it seems…

    • I think that many of them did. They sacrificed for those who would know the pain because those people were alive and free to feel. They sacrificed for something they believed to be bigger than themselves and their lives.

      Nice to see you.


  15. Truedessa says:

    I too was thinking of Veteran’s Day as it will be around next week. A very timely piece of writing.

  16. Kathy Reed says:

    Long time passing…..very poignant poem on dead soldiers…

  17. Prajakta says:

    Very thought provoking! Brings in the often unspoken tragedies that are present in their hearts!

  18. Yes.. truly the human tribal instinct..and large diverse populations do not seem to mix very well.. and this tribal instinct thing is well engrained.. but maybe.. just maybe.. this internet thing.. is a way of connecting like a hive.. and one day people will be connected enough in common purpose.. to quench the thirst of tribal instinct.. and seeing territory as one we all share.. so is love enough.. maybe not.. but there are other things to fight against.. like sports.. or anything we don’t actually kill each other over with to compete….

    to keep blood and love…

    safe..:)for a continuing territory of life….

    • That would be good. But the internet is used for divisiveness and hatred, too, as the terrorists use it. I think that mankind’s innate feelings will never allow such togetherness and peace to happen.


  19. Sumana Roy says:

    “another layer of human fertilizer / above us”…the lines sent a chill down my spine…we will never learn & that’s the tragedy of human life….

  20. Snakypoet (Rosemary Nissen-Wade) says:

    A beautiful poem which says it all, succinctly.

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