Monday, March 3, 2014

War Songs: These poems transport you to the middle of the Vietnam War

I bought this book not really knowing what I would be getting, but I was very intrigued by the idea.

What I got was a book of poetry that was so obviously written by a person who was baring their soul that the emotions almost seem to leap from the pages. For me, I would have to believe the act of writing this book took almost as much courage than what was displayed by the author during the times of the experience. At the end, there is an essay that describes somewhat of what I went through during the brief conflict I was involved in with the Marines - "When the capacity of a person to feel is shut down to avoid an overwhelming experience, the process is systemic."

You could feel the detachment of feelings in some of Grady Harp's works, but mixed with that was the knowledge that while it may have been easier and more convenient for a person to keep these emotions hidden and bottled - Harp took the path less traveled and not only let the emotions come, but also gave them a voice through his poetry.

Read this book, and that voice that sings the "War Songs" will ring many different tones in your ears, mind, and soul. Thank you, Dr. Harp, for finding, and freeing,the voice inside of you to sing. We owe you, and all those who served in Vietnam, a debt of gratitude for the blood, sweat, and tears that - unfortunately - were the instruments in the song's creation.

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