The Uniform


Take no need to the man but the uniform he wears. For he, represents far greater things than this world.

Connor Tennies, Sports Editor

I noticed the uniform and the heavy soled shinny black boots

Not the man wearing them


I remember the clean fresh smell of a warrior, as they stormed into the house.

Broken glass, ripped down hangings, a slashed sofa, a pulled curtain,

A sudden maneuver to throw my brother’s bear across the yard,

Such military worries, hidden weapons in a child’s best friend.

Your broken cross I buried in our garden after they left. God, come back to my house, I am waiting for you.


All I saw were figures painted the color of grass and bark,

With edges traced by some crazed church painter’s brush,

Faceless with pockets full of bullets and chords,

Their arms intertwined with red eyes and swollen hands of my teachers,

Stiff figures against the soft jeans, sweaters, and knitted hats below.

Standing witness in the yard above watching, I waited for her to die.


Shinny black like the dirt dug from the mass grave,

Full of crumbled human bits, decaying colored cloth,

While the sun scorched the group sorting the cellular samples.

I saw the black boots etched into the bone fragments.

Lost bones of lost loved ones from empty families,


Standing in the desert, I waited for a name.


No, I do not see the man, just the uniform.

I see the butt of the gun, the dent of the boot, and the slickness in the air,

The cruel power of the swirl jungle green print with gold trim.

As a witness God left me, and I was waiting.


Change; let me meet the man,

Maybe the waiting is over.