Masticated sobs cut the sky
sight of mailman’s letter.
Aunt Desiree faints
before grey envelope is opened
divulges grave knowledge.

He’s dead! It's my fault!
Mama shrieks, sisters bracing her fall -
James officially confirmed dead.

Before Darfur, Palestine,
Desert Storm, Afghanistan, Korea,
where Father escaped cognizant,
lives eternally shattered
like herbs ground by marble pestles.
Families faced military papers
casualties of war’s glitter.
Some only culled white noise.

People pontificate personal tribulations.
Vietnam was commensurate:
global colossal waste, scars imbedded
in defiled gunshot wounds.