by Nancy L. Meek ©2001
He was getting old and paunchy
And his hair was falling fast,
And he sat around the VFW,
Telling stories of the past.
Of a war that he once fought in
And the deeds that he had done,
In his exploits with his buddies;
They were heroes, every one.
And 'tho sometimes to his neighbors
His tales became a joke,
All his buddies listened quietly
For they knew where of he spoke.
But we'll hear his tales no longer,
For ol' Bob has passed away,
And the world's a little poorer
For a Soldier died today.
He won't be mourned by many,
Just his children and his wife.
For he lived an ordinary,
Very quiet sort of life.
He held a job and raised a family,
Going quietly on his way;
And the world won't note his passing,
'Tho a Soldier died today.
When politicians leave this earth,
Their bodies lie in state,
While thousands note their passing,
And proclaim that they were great.
Papers tell of their life stories
From the time that they were young
But the passing of a Soldier
Goes unnoticed, and unsung.
Is the greatest contribution
To the welfare of our land,
Some jerk who breaks his promise
And cons his fellow man?
Or the ordinary fellow
Who in times of war and strife,
Goes off to serve his country
And offers up his life?
The politician's stipend
And the style in which he lives,
Are often disproportionate,
To the service that he gives.
While the ordinary Soldier,
Who offered up his all,
Is paid off with a medal
And perhaps a pension, small..
It's so easy to forget them,
For it is so many times
That our Bobs and Jims and Johnnys,
Went to battle, but we know,
It is not the politicians
With their compromise and ploys,
Who won for us the freedom
That our country now enjoys.
Should you find yourself in danger,
With your enemies at hand,
Would you really want some cop-out,
With his ever waffling stand?
Or would you want a Soldier--
His home, his country, his kin,
Just a common Soldier,
Who would fight until the end.
He was just a common Soldier,
And his ranks are growing thin,
But his presence should remind us
We may need his like again.
For when countries are in conflict,
We find the Soldier's part
Is to clean up all the troubles
That the politicians start.
If we cannot do him honor
While he's here to hear the praise,
Then at least let's give him homage
At the ending of his days.
Perhaps just a simply headline
In the paper that might say:
"OUR COUNTRY IS IN MOURNING,
A SOLDIER DIED TODAY."
Pass On The Patriotism!
YOU can make a difference
The soldier slides his sword into its sheath
Having completed the missions given to him
Grateful to be one of the few men to leave
After hanging his life on war's proverbial limb
He has done his duty...he has given his all
Then to country, home and hearth he returns
But he can not read the writing on the wall
That the heat of battle eternally burns
He can put his trust in no one
For the enemy still eats at his soul
Caught in a hell with nowhere to run
Believing nothing will make him whole
This sacrificed soldier will always bleed
Whipped and tortured by the thorns of war
Rejected and scorned by those he freed
Stoned for his deeds on a foreign shore
The blood on his hands refuses to dry
A constant reminder of where he has been
His will to survive fights with his wish to die
In this carnal world of throw-away men
He has seen too much....killed too many
Propelling his god just beyond his reach
Searching for life's true meaning, if any
Soul swaying, fore'er standing in the breach
Time proves only the war still remains
Its hands stirring the grains of orange dust
An endless tune resounding in horrific strains
Its death knell extolling the demise of the just
A prisoner of war is this sacrificed man
Dwelling in a camp of suffering and pain
His soul at the mercy of the great I Am
Caught in a world where nightmares reign
Will he ever find peace here on this earth
Before death's fingers encircle his throat
Or will peace remain just beyond his girth
Abandoning him eternally to a land remote
Will no one heed the gutteral cries
Of this bleeding soldier swaying in the wind
Seeing his own soul burning in demonic eyes
Fighting eternal battles which refuse to end
No greater love has any man
Than to offer his life for a friend
Some do not fully understand
The sacrifice made in the end
Photos of ONE/MILLION (9)
- Temporary Roadside Memorials 3,160 photos, 288 members
- Ford Trucks 1953 - 1956 8,210 photos, 587 members
- Apache Trail 189 photos, 22 members
- People Only, Please 5,711 photos, 104 members
- Sign of the Times (All Types of Signs) 54,458 photos, 2,152 members
- #1 Police, Fire, EMS Seals & Patches 1,689 photos, 108 members
- #1 U.S. Federal Law Enforcement Agencies 6,838 photos, 268 members
- Farm machinery around the world 1,903 photos, 13 members
- Human Faces: Fascinating Just the Way We Are 81,914 photos, 5,511 members
- Custom License Plates 751 photos, 16 members
- Commercial Boats & Ships 20,871 photos, 758 members
- New York Police Department 3,661 photos, 412 members
- New York Photography 434,427 photos, 22,005 members
- RAW Street Photography 1,253,289 photos, 39,604 members
- Tired Iron, Antique Farm Equipment 8,087 photos, 351 members
- My Favourite photo - la mia foto preferita 100,983 photos, 5,367 members
- Coastal California 907 photos, 62 members
- Emporium of succulents 828 photos, 25 members
- - I LOVE NATURE - 1,622,925 photos, 48,855 members
- Travel Photography 3,891,319 photos, 131,260 members
- Positively Napa 159 photos, 14 members
- NIKON - CANON - SONY 25,480 photos, 1,086 members
- Specialistz™ 375,503 photos, 11,472 members
- Hit -Me- With- Your- Best -Shot ~ Post 1 / Comment 2 38,852 photos, 928 members
- ! * Interesting Traffic on Wheels *High quality only* P1-A2 32,559 photos, 768 members
- Cactus & succulent 23,096 photos, 1,212 members
- Real Law Enforcement Trucks 14,631 photos, 322 members
- *Karma* 877,583 photos, 17,150 members
- California People 4,927 photos, 301 members
- Great Signs 103,198 photos, 5,388 members
- Lovely Eyesore 20,650 photos, 18,752 members
- San Francisco Street Photography 2,510 photos, 215 members
- San Francisco 270,705 photos, 15,583 members
- Garden of Life; Jardin de vie; Garten des Lebens 10,325 photos, 249 members
- Jardins des Ombres ; garden of shadows ; Garten der Schatten 1,655 photos, 156 members
- New Belgium Beer 909 photos, 87 members
- Colorful Murals on Buildings, the more colorful the better! 1,127 photos, 40 members
- Food & drinks all over the world 10,773 photos, 480 members
- American Patriotism & Pride 1,520 photos, 235 members
- I Love Old Glory 3,236 photos, 488 members
- The American Flag 2,657 photos, 524 members
- Lucky Stars 565 photos, 167 members
- Star Not Star 1,086 photos, 310 members
- ALL POLICE 85,891 photos, 470 members
- U.S.A Emergency Vehicles 3,550 photos, 50 members
- U.S. Border Patrol (USBP) 914 photos, 238 members
- FAIR Immigration 48 photos, 13 members
- US Sheriff's Cars 1,609 photos, 44 members
- California Wine Country 1,950 photos, 188 members
- Crooked San Francisco 510 photos, 145 members
Franks Photos! says:
"Talk about overdue? Thanks for all the outstanding photos over the years Willie. Thanks for the gorgeous ladies and beautiful scenic shots.
But most of all, my Brother......thanks for our Friendship that we have shared about the 'Nam. No one else but a 'Nam Brother would understand. I know we have shared some laughter and some tears over both of our photos from that horrible place.
But one day it will be all over and we can be on that final Freedom Bird. Keep the faith, Brother.........."
August 20th, 2012
"Here it is November, and I'm just now figuring out about this feature. I had the pleasure of reading a new testimonial for me from a friend we have in common, only to find one from Willie on my profile waiting since April to be accepted and activated. Sorry, my friend ... I'm too often just a little slow!!
Having known him all my life, I can speak with some authority on the strength of Willie's character, his appreciation for friendship, and his humanity ... his photostream speaks for itself on his talent and abilities as a photographer.
Our paths went very different directions after school, but having this chance to resume where we left off has been a real Blessing. We've both had a bit of a bumpy road, but as I see the focus of his attentions now, I am a little overwhelmed with his journey.
Photography has linked him to such meaningful parts of life, and his dedication to informing, involving, and supporting those he touches is a remarkable inspiration. His captures of political events, cultural events, and issues of interest, all serve to enlighten those who linger here. About to roll 25,000 frames on flickr ... a remarkable legacy to be sure!
I truly appreciate your support, your friendship, and your example. You, sir, are a fine friend, a fine American and a fine human being. Thanks!!"
November 9th, 2010
Wasco Photos says:
"Willie is a great guy, a veteran, and genuine. He is brother who always has a drink waiting for him here in Oregon. Do not confuse his kindness for weakness."
June 4th, 2010
"I have not known Willie very long but already he has been such a wonderful Flickr friend... he always takes the time to visit and comment and I really appreciate that. Not to mention that his photos are superb!!!
"Give me friends or give me death". A life without friendship is terrible and lonely. We are social beings and friendship is an incredibly important part of our lives. Appreciating friends is something we must always make time for. In today's competitive world it is easy to get up in our careers or our latest project. It is important to keep a sense of perspective. It is nice to rise high in the company but all the money in the world is not going to keep you company on a cold winter night.""
May 17th, 2010
Brave Heart says:
" ONE/MILLION / Willie Stark just might be one of the very best mixed subject photographers on Flickr. I can laugh and get a tear in my eye anythime I look through his photo stream.
I have had Willie as a contact for 40 months and enjoyed every moment of it. He just seems to find a picture anywhere.
Thanks for being such a great contact and good member of Flickr.
Thanks Brave Heart"
July 12th, 2009
"At first i was not sure about taking on another contact. However, i persisted for a while and find i am fascinated by the diversity of photos, the beauty of country and what did it for me was the poem by Nancy Meek (which really bought me undone) and the brilliant photography of warplanes and that era of my life back in the 60s. Thanks for your efforts and contributions, you are definately a contact. Gary"
September 18th, 2008
"Willie is an amazing photographer. He shoots such a wide variety of subjects that you could spend all day just looking at his wonderful photos. You'll see everything from the beach to the Arizona landscapes, from Viet Nam to flowers & animals and now the streets of Italy. His great sense of humor makes me laugh!! He'll shot anything! That's what keeps me coming back to view his latest, greatest or craziest pics! It's a pure joy to stop by. Marilyn"
March 3rd, 2008
"I'm in awe of the talent behind this camera. He has a natural talent for finding the right shot at just the right moment in time. The truly great ones are the ones that make it look easy, and he does. His is a standard of quality that one can only hope to aquire."
September 6th, 2006
"He has an amazing ability to capture nature at it's finest moment and freeze that and share it with others. His nature pics are outstanding. There seems to be sentiment with every photograph he takes. They really move you and make you feel they way he does about the subject. They all seem to be taken straight from the heart."
July 13th, 2006
O'ahu Kinipela says:
"Great photos of the Kama'aina lifestyle. I enjoy his variety. Can't wait to see what the future holds. Definately one of my favorites! ALOHA!"
July 6th, 2006
"ONE/MILLION's pics are uplifting. The shots of Hawaii and cars are brilliant. Take your time and examine the variety of tags and seek out the eye candy!"
February 5th, 2006
- Willie Stark
- November 2005
- Brownsburg Indiana
- Queen Creek, Az., USA
- I am:
- Male and Single