Tag Archives: war

A Letter Home: Korea 1952



All I can say

is that I was not created

to blow up bridges,

but to build them.

But brass wants them blown,

and the corps builds them and blows them.

I can also say

that it is cold here,

even for a Minnesota boy.

I can probably say

that after all this is over

And no one remembers us

that there will still be the space inbetween

we are lined up on now.

I can also say that nothing

is as big as the space in world

where we are not together.

I can say, just to you,

that I give myself a couple minutes each night

to think about

dancing with you in my arms

and the low lights of the dance floor

at the supper club

and you have just said,

“Oh, darling, darling,

it’s Begin the Beguine”

and laid your head on my shoulder.

I can say,

that in spite of myself

that hard on that memory

comes the memory of standing alone

quiet with the wind in the pines

after I walked you home.

Copyright Kay Winter

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Something Cold Falls

In these endless days,
I think of the small yellow room
off the kitchen
where we had our coffee every morning.

I remember sitting with you
looking out the window
over the cobbled streets
of our old city,
now blasted and forsaken.

And something cold falls
through my heart.

I write to you every day
on scraps of paper
folded and refolded
worn and gray at the edges
but each time
I pass a mailbox
I remember that you are no place
that I can send it to.

And something cold falls
through my heart.

When I dream of the worst,
that they have you,
Of what they do,
I wake up
and hold my hands against my cheeks
as you did.

You are alive,
I tell myself,

And I am fleeing.

My old striped suitcase
of orange and green
that fell on your head
on the train ride
through the mountains
so many years ago
drags behind me
leaving bruises on my ankles.

Where I am is nowhere.
I am only where I am from.
And where I am from
is no longer there.

The changing sky
follows me
as I travel,
the gray clouds
chase me across the distances.

Tonight I write to you
in the margins of
a magazine
someone left
in the train station.
Near the words I cannot read,
I write:

Dear lover,
I am safe here
in a small room
with bare walls
and sheets that smell of bleach.

Someday, dear one,

I stop here and
look out the cold window…

We will walk back
along the night streets
where we parted
past the secrets
of the rustling palms
back to the small yellow room
and the coffee
will be thick
and bright.

– Copyright Kay Winter

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August Meeting

The two heads of white hair
bow over knees
and still, wrinkled hands
resting on gray kimonos.

On the same day in early August
they meet at Kofukuji shrine
to share silence
in the open room
facing the garden
of small blue flowers.

The wind catches
the temple bell.

– Kay Winter

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