The picture is of my Marine grandfather (1921-2011), who saw intense combat in the Pacific in World War II. He never had loss of life or limb or mind, and no letters came to his family with tidings very sad, but all of the other things in this poem apply to him.
Beautiful country, sacred land,
With freedoms we hold dear.
A Constitution at its heart,
Without a foreign peer.
All of it was bought, you see,
With blood and sweat and tears.
In battlefields and trenches,
With conquest of great fears.
The soldiers, sailors, airmen too,
Have worn the uniform,
Made sacred by great sacrifice,
In shell and bullet storm.
In the nether world of terror
That seems to have no end,
With loss of life and limb and mind,
And scars that will not mend.
Sorrow for a comrade lost,
A perished, gallant lad,
And letters come to family
With tidings very sad.
And many nights for years to come,
They dream of those who fell,
With strangers made of family,
Who once knew them so well.
They suffered for their country,
And for loved ones back at home.
They did their duty faithfully,
With great deeds oft unknown.
No words of men or angels, ev'n,
Can ever be enough
To thank the veterans who endured
Through struggles hard and tough.
But words there must be nonetheless,
For they who fought the fight,
To let them know our gratitude
For defending what is right.
For giving us the freedoms
That we hold dear to heart.
For a Constitution kept alive
By those who did their part.
Thank you, Grandpa Wells. God be with you 'til we meet again.