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By John I. Blair

Just fragments of a memory . . .
That baking summer afternoon
In Wichita
I saw parading tanks
Press treadmarks in the soft tar
As they clanked
Around the corner
Onto Main Street.

My uncles came to visit
Dressed in uniforms;
My toys were cut from wood
Or cardboard; in our yard
We raised a hutch of pullets
While neighbors fattened rabbits;
My mother fed us mutton
Served with home-canned beans.

My playmates shouted
“Bombs away over Tokyo”,
Then threw their clods;
And when we made up games,
“Step on a crack, break Hitler’s back”
Stayed fun
Long after bodies charred
Beside the Berlin chancellery.

©2005 John I. Blair  

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