Thoughts on Memorial Day…
Do Not Stand At My Grave And Weep – Mary Frye (1932)
Do not stand at my grave and weep,
I am not there, I do not sleep.
I am in a thousand winds that blow;
I am the softly falling snow.
I am the gentle showers of rain;
I am the fields of ripening grain.
I am in the morning hush;
I am in the graceful rush.
Of beautiful birds in circling flight,
I am the starshine of the night.
I am in the flowers that bloom,
I am in a quiet room.
I am the birds that sing,
I am in each lovely thing.
Do not stand at my grave and cry,
I am not there. I do not die.
The month of May has always been a month of celebrations, from Mother’s Day to birthdays to important anniversaries. For me and mine, May is a time for family, either by choice or blood, and of any configuration. For me, it is a time to celebrate those that I love, whether it is their birth, or mine and my sister’s (for my Mother), and anniversaries which helped bring all of us together. And if the weather cooperates, than even my gardens appear to be celebrating as the azaleas, dogwoods, and all the flowers burst into pastel hues in anticipation of the intense colors of summer.
With all of these emotions and thoughts directed towards celebrating those we love for most of the month, it seems more than fitting to end May with Memorial Day, a day dedicated to remembrance of those who lost their lives keeping us safe and making it possible to celebrate all those birthdays, and anniversaries of people and families we hold so dear. My grandfather is buried at Arlington National Cemetery and this year, we buried my uncle close to him in a ceremony so moving that people were stopped all over the vast landscape as the sounds of the gun salute rang out over the hills and the trumpet played Taps.
Rolling Thunder passes by my parents farm every year on their way into the District and my father, a veteran of the Korean war, goes outside and salutes them as they pass by. Our media here in the metropolitan area is full of pictures and videos marking the solemn day of remembrance as flags are put at every grave at Arlington and the crowds swell at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial as well as that of the World War II one nearby. If you have never visited the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, then you have not experienced the power and overwhelming sense of loss that pervades that site. The Wall itself a marker of the high cost of valor and service to our country in the names of the men and women lost reflected back to us. In that black stone reflection, we see the list of names in chronological order and our own reflections, the recipients of their sacrifice. For me, never has a memorial to our dead felt so alive, awash in grief, and sorrow and gratitude.
This Memorial Weekend also marks the end to the Rolling Thunder procession, something that started in 1987 when the roar and rumble of hundreds of motorcycles from all over the country entered the capital on Memorial Day wanting accountability for the MIA’s …their name was Rolling Thunder. Every year since then their number grew as did their chapters from state to state. No longer just Vietnam veterans, but veterans from the Gulf Wars, Iraq, any places where our soldiers served. Rolling Thunder advocates for accountability for the missing in action and prisoners of war from all wars and military engagements.
For me, the roar of the motorcycles passing by is as much a part of Memorial Day as the flags flying. They say it’s due to the high cost of the parade and security which has been billed to Rolling Thunder the past couple of years and as a non profit organization, something they can no long afford. Somehow, that seems terribly wrong. So I will enjoy the rumble and roars one last time and try not to think about the quiet times ahead without the flashing and loud cloud of remembrance and patriotism that use to sound the arrival of Memorial Weekend .
Enjoy your Memorial weekend for those of you who live in the US or Americans abroad. Spare some thoughts and prayers for those now gone and for those they left behind.
Soldier, rest! Thy warfare o’er,
Sleep the sleep that knows not breaking,
Dream of battled fields no more.
Days of danger, nights of waking.
-Sir Walter Scott
This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words
Sunday, May 26:
- Rolling Thunder and Memorial Weekend
- This Week at Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words
- Release Blitz – A.E. Via – Prophesy Book #2: The Bringer of Wrath
- A Fall in Autumn by Michael G. Williams Tour
- A MelanieM Review: A Fall in Autumn by Michael G. Williams
Monday, May 27:
- Review Tour – Sean Azinsalt – It’s In My Blood (Criminal Delights)
- RELEASE BLITZ Keeping Cade by SE Jakes
- PROMO Amy Lane on String Boys
- An Ashlez Review : It’s In My Blood (Criminal Delights) by Sean Azinsalt
- A VVivacious Review:It’s in My Blood – Criminal Delights: Obsession by Sean Azinsaltt
- A MelanieM Review Uncommon Ground (Aliens in New York #1) by Kelly Jensen
- A Chaos Moondrawn Release Day Review: Hitting the Mark by Aidan Wayne
Tuesday, May 28:
- Cover Reveal – Come Play: An MM Erotica Charity Anthology
- PROMO M.D. Grimm
- Release Blitz – Anna Martin – The Color Of Summer
- An Ali Release Day Review: String Boys by Amy Lane
- A Melanie Review Purple Haze (Aliens in New York #2) by Kelly Jensen
- An Alisa Release Day Review: The Color of Summer by Anna Martin
- An Ashlez Review: Match Grade (Criminal Delights) by GB Gordon
Wednesday, May 29:
- REVIEW TOUR Torn by Rick R Reed
- Review Tour – Benoit (Owatonna U #3) – RJ Scott & V.L. Locey
- TOUR Zale by Michelle Frost
- PROMO Dem Had+Giveaway for Barricades
- A Vvivacious Review:Eight Lives: (Match Made in Hell #1) by Autumn Breeze
- A MelanieM Review: Benoit (Owatonna U #3) by RJ Scott & V.L. Locey
- A Lila Review: Torn by Rick R Reed
Thursday, May 30:
- Release Blitz – Roe Horvat – Adam Only
- HARMONY INK PRESS PROMO Jeff Adams
- Blog Tour – Third Time’s The Charm by K. Evan Coles
- A VVivacious Review Want Me by Neve Wilder
- A Lucy Review Third Time’s The Charm by K. Evan Coles
- A MelanieM Review On the Subject of Griffons by Lindsey Byrd
Friday, May 31:
- TOUR ON THE SUBJECT OF GRIFFONS by Lindsey Byrd
- Matchmaking Beyond the Veil by Mara Townsend
- PROMO Michael Gouda
- Blog and Review Tour OUT OF THE SHADE by S.A. McAuley
- A Ali Review: Out of the Shade by S.A. McAuley
- A MelanieM Release Day Review: To the Ends of the Earth by Michael Gouda
- A Lucy Pre release Review The Reluctant Husband (Goddess-Blessed #2) by Eliot Grayson
Saturday, June 1:
- Book Blast – Between Bloody Lips by Sai Fox
- BLOG TOUR Strike a Chord by KM Neuhold
- A MelanieM Review: Always With Me by Kris Jacen