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Tue May 30, 2017, 11:04 PM

My friend's memorial day post. A very moving, exceptional essay


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All around the wall, of course, are the things that make it different. Little things left by visitors in memory of one of the 58,307 people who go with the 58,307 names. And, those things, whatever they may be, have a way of making real what looks unreal, all those names on all those panels. I have no idea which name went with the pieces of paper that caught my attention thanks to that wind.There was no identification on the letter and too many names on the panel to even attempt to figure it out. It could have been written for anyone. In more ways than one.

The letter was written by the sister of one of the men who went with one of those names. Hed remain ever nameless to me, of course, but, to her, he remained, after all those years, a gaping absence in her life, as those pages made clear. Because, they told a story.A story of this woman, in bed, being visited by her late brother in a dream. And, in the dream, the sister told him about what had been going on in her life in all the years hed been absent from it. Things youd expect a sister to tell a brother after such an absence. How mom and dad were doing. What was happening with various family members and friends. What was happening in their hometown.

She talked about her husband and family, the kids shed had, his nieces and nephews that, of course, hed never gotten to meet. And, then they talked about the days before. Memories, things theyd done as kids. Things only a brother and sister could share. Things she now had no one to share with, except in the way she was now sharing it.

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