“Who is she?” The policeman asked as he stood next to her feet.

“Just another homeless woman who died here in the street.”


“Does she have any friends or family?” he asked reeling from the smell.

“Not that anyone knows,” came the answer…”not that anyone can tell.”


“I hear she was a nurse in Vietnam”…another person said stopping to stare.

“She never said but I always wondered…what happened to her there.”


"But that war ended over 40 years ago!” the young policeman said,

“Surely there’s another reason this woman lies here dead!”


“There has to be another explanation…there’s got to be something more…

How can this old homeless woman be a casualty of that war?”


A man in tattered khakis limped over to the crowd

He saluted the homeless woman then stood up tall and proud…


“We hear a lot about men like me and Vietnam.” he said 

“The horrors…the way we were treated…and it’s all true…

but forgotten are the he nurses who took care of us…

and the traumas they went through.” 


“There is a painful truth about war…how its memories transcend…

“and just because a war is over…doesn’t mean the battle ends."


“Some of us can’t forget the agony and our pain…we can’t conceal.

“In some of us the suffering continues…some wounds will never heal.”


“Who was she another passerby asked?”

The policeman’s stood up proud and resolute.

She was a woman…a nurse…a soldier!” he said…


and he gave her a salute.

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A Poem For Veteran's Day

It would look fine in the newspapers for that holiday. Fine write. Honoring all who die helping others.