The day I drop my husband off,

On a military base, where he will train,

Then go, off to Afghanistan, off to war,

I watch him walk away, looking back,

Once, halfway across the parking lot,

Halfway gone, and, then, disappearing,

Into, this, our year long deployment.

And I sit in the parking lot, in between,

Other cars, other soldiers, other wives,

The car next to me, with the engine off,

And a soldier, climbing out, getting out,

His duffel bag, from the trunk, and I watch,

As he leans through, the open car window, this parking lot,

Where a bus is waiting, kissing her, again, one more time,

Before he goes, again, one more time, back to Afghanistan,

This place that juts between them like land, like time or space,

The space and time it will take to get him back.

And he is holding the back of her head, pressing

Her face against his chest, which is covered now

In camouflage fatigues, standard issue, and he is

Saying, whispering, into her face and ear and hair,

How this will all be behind us soon,

Afghanistan, a war, another year long deployment,

This separation stretching out in front of them, like

The road she will take, driving home, alone,

Or the sky, he will drop through, on a plane,

That will drop, down, on a base in Kuwait,

Where they will give him his gun,

And where he will drop it back off,


On his way home,

This injury she cannot see,

TBI, they call it,

A Humvee, a bomb, a shaken brain,

And a phone call telling her something happened.

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2 Responses to Shake

  1. oh goosebumps. truly mesmerizing.

  2. tshang says:

    This is really resonates. You have a beautiful blog here.

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