Monday, May 12, 2008
From our readers...
I have received many e-mails responding to the poetry segment last Friday, May 9, on The News Hour. (I only post your messages on my blog if you have given me permission to do so. ) I'd like to share this one with you as it was very touching to Ben and me:
Dear Ms. Richey:
Thank you for sharing your poetry with the public and with the viewing audience on PBS. I saw the interview with you and your son Ben this afternoon on public television, and I was moved. I was heartened to see that you and your son are willing to sit together and discuss such deep issues so candidly and with such mutual compassion. I have rarely seen military families willing to engage on the air in this type of healing dialogue, perhaps because the media are so reluctant to focus on resolution. I suspect and hope that there are other families out there who are trying to build similar bridges, and I know there are certainly many more families who would benefit from this show and your poetry.
My father is a WWII veteran with Alzheimer's, and he has very little short-term memory left. A few months ago he told me a story about his tour of duty as an airplane mechanic in the European theater, a story that I never heard him tell before. He recounted the story as if it were yesterday, so vividly and detailed as if it came from some clear pool rather than the tangled memory of his disease. I sometimes think this and other war stories of his are the result of post-traumatic stress, even though they are sixty years after-the-fact. I hope your son and other veterans of the war will never have to experience long-lasting memories such as my father's. I feel that the work and writing you are doing will go a long way to make this possible. Thank you again.