Long time ago, I used to wear a Seiko wristwatch that featured the date AND the day on the clockface. Mon, Tue, Wed, etc were in black..but Sun was in red. It stopped one day, very near the epicenter of a deafening explosion. I think it was 1:18…and there was a young LT bleeding out in the jungle. I finally wrote about it, years ago. SUNDAY, BLOODY SUNDAY.
The watch is in a large plastic zip-loc bag, high up on closet shelf along with a few other things, like some letters, a map case, dog tags and a compass, all of which are covered with this faded reddish-brown residue. This Sunday will mark the 45th anniversary of Sunday, September 14th, 1969. At some point on Sunday, I’ll probably reach up there and take the bag down, open it and lay out the items. There’s no fixed ceremony…I’ll just handle them and look at them and remember. And then put them back up there. Seems like the odds would be 7-1 or something like that, but the date really hasn’t fallen on that many Sundays over the years.
Used to be pretty bad. Anniversary Syndrome. I’d be in a locked, darkened room, sobbing for hours. Took me years to realize what I was sobbing. “He was so young…” And he was. He shouldn’t have gotten any older, really shouldn’t have….yet he did. In ’88’, a couple friends told me I needed to talk to someone. I guess I was finally ready, after 8 years of depression and Survivor Guilt. And when I finally did, life got a lot better. 8 lost years, 36 to 44, pretty much the prime of my professional life. I worked but I was just passing time, really looking for a way out.
If you hurt, don’t wait. Don’t waste any more years. Talk to someone.
THE SOLDIERS PROJECT
This image was created by a graphic artist, fine poet and friend, Rick Lupert for my book, RETURN TO EDEN.