Giving Thanks for Veterans

My father Richard H. Knarr is a World War II Veteran, having served three years in Europe with the Army. Growing up I rarely thought about my dad as a veteran. He didn’t look like a veteran. My dad didn’t dress in uniform or wear metals of honor at memorial services. My dad spoke peace from the pulpit and rarely talked about the war unless pressed. He wrote poetry and taught school. Dad had a rifle, all farmers did. The one picture I have of my father holding a military weapon shows camaraderie rather than military might.

My dad turned 95 this year. Fortunately, my parents have written a book about their war experiences and have talked on tape and video about their experiences. Our family has a way to remember some of their tales, yet nothing is as precious as hearing them tell the stories as if the experiences happened yesterday. 
At this time of Veterans Day, it is important to take the time to thank a veteran and listen to the stories they are willing to share. Too soon our WWII Vets will be gone and their stories lost.
Time by Richard H. Knarr
Time, precious time,
So elusive there,
That flows away
Without our care.
Time rapid time,
You’re running still,
Like the spring rain
Upon the hill.
Now you are here,
And then you’re gone,
As fragile ice
Upon the pond.
Time, restless time,
You’re never still,
So like the grist
From flowing mill.
Can you not stay,
As the sunshine
For just a day?
Oh, time, be still.
Time passes too quickly to let another opportunity elude us without sharing with one another our life experiences. Talk and listen to a veteran today.
Knarr, Richard H. Random Thoughts. 1985.