Ozark Dust: A Villanelle

— Leslie Hoffman

Breathing in red dust of their ancestors
Three soldiers, at ease, solemnify
Blood spilled in yesteryear’s war.

On a splintered bench sits Ozark lore;
Three warriors claim battles gone by,
Breathing in red dust of their ancestors.
Invisible wounds earned on foreign shores

Recall to the three, cries of semper fi
While forfeiting blood in yesteryear’s war.
Fissured Ozark clay, front of Amos’ store,
Formed with memories of do-or-die,

Embodies red dust of their ancestors.
On a splintered bench, esprit de corps,
Rest three weathered comrades, nary a blind eye
To blood they spilled in yesteryear’s war.

Parades long past, now on homeland shores,
Three soldiers at ease, semper fi,
On a splintered bench, fear disillusionment more
Than their blood being spilled in tomorrow’s war

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