Ode to Sanchez Valdez, the Friend I Never Had

by Stephen Du Marais

I knew you only by your face
and dog-tag
In those last seconds,
before the charge,
you were ferocious and
oblivious
and I imagined that your expression
beneath the mud and rain,
in some way
— all too human —
reflected mine

And then you ran
and so did I,
and that was the last I saw of you
Somewhere,
I hope
you have a flower garden,
some children,
         and finally,
              that dog.

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