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Thursday, November 12, 2015


by Howard Winn

Above: The New Yorker Daily Cartoon by Benjamin Schwartz, November 11, 2015

Honor their sacrifice and commitment
say all the politicians who have ducked
out of the room when the recruiters
appear with open arms to welcome
the children to their old men’s war
but they have appealed to some daddy
to get them out of it or into some
safe and cushy assignment that may
look legit but is as much a fake as they
are pretending that the National Guard
assignment in the states or a military
prep school where their harried parents
have put the undisciplined little bastard
out of their home and hair and some
tough drill sergeant is the one to shape
up the hulking darlings with too much money
and those who have actually served know
the game which often ends in maiming
or painful dismemberment or death
while each year at the time of  WWI
Armistice banks and the Post Office close
and in some schools at eleven o’clock
on the eleventh day of the eleventh
month there is a moment of silence
for children who have no idea why
this is happening to them until
they grow into the next inevitable war.

Howard Winn's work has been published in Dalhousie Review, Galway Review, Descant.  Antigonish Review, Southern Humanities Review, Chaffin Review, Evansville Review, and Blueline. His B. A. is from Vassar College. his M. A. from the Stanford University Creative Writing Program. He is an Air Force veteran who served overseas during war time.