sudden deafness…

she could see his face
moving in slow motion
somber and professional
yet very sympathetic
his graying hair
spoke to how many times
he had repeated these words
but with each saying
she was certain that
     he did not lose
     himself in sorrow
     nor reflect upon the sorrow
     that filled his heart
     as he drove home
     each night
     into a crimson horizon
     among the sleep-walkers of life
     and day dreamers of peace
she left those thoughts of him
and began to look for clues of his life
some were evident in the room
     the cane angled against
     the gold-plated flag post
     and the sutures that ran along his left arm
     dodging from sight
     under his neatly pressed uniform
and the way he handled each form
     attending to each line
     as if folding a flag
     and handing it to a loved one
and how he conveyed through gestures
the importance of all the fifty lines
to be filled in by the surviving spouse
     like some vicar speaking of psalm 27
she could not hear him
all she could hear
was the final bugle call
and the death echoing
volley of rifles