Wednesday, June 20, 2012

New Poetry by Robert Demaree


That you were a writer and not a soldier
Made you no less brave,
Your war short, hard to defend,
But no less noble.
You went to report on things Homer had seen,
In a land older than Hector.
We found you on a map of unknown places,
Read your dispatches, heard you on TV:
We tasted sand and young men’s fear.
We did not attend rallies of protest or support
But went instead with your sons
To soccer games and preschool plays.
I do not pray much but prayed for you.
We read your coming-home piece
And thought of Odysseus.
We tracked your journey—Kuwait, London.
That night I went back downstairs after midnight
And turned on the computer again,
To be sure that your plane had touched down.

- Robert Demaree 2012

“To Our Son-in-Law, Returning from Iraq” appeared in miller’s pond, January 2008.


The American Legion hut
In their small town
Had been named
For her great-uncle,
The first to fall in France.
But after another war,
Another hut,
Named for someone else.
The basketball court
That honored the famous coach
Is darkened now and unused.
At the school where her father taught
They established a prize in his memory
She wonders if they still give it.
You can have something named for you
For a while
And then not.

- Robert Demaree 2012

Robert Demaree is the author of four collections of poems, including Mileposts (October 2009), published by Beech River Books. The winner of the 2007 Conway, N.H., Library Poetry Award, he is a retired school administrator with ties to North Carolina, Pennsylvania and New Hampshire. He has had over 550 poems published or accepted by 125 periodicals, including Louisville Review, miller’s pond, and BluePepper. For further information see

1 comment:

Stuart Barnes said...

am very moved by TO OUR SON-IN-LAW RETURNING FROM IRAQ: APRIL 2003. thank you, robert