Saturday, January 2, 2010

White Crosses

White crosses alongside the road
honoring the memory of the recently slain.
How did it come that these people died
here—what were they like, while they still lived?

Cars and trucks speed past obliviously,
ignoring the ghosts of the freshly passed.
Each one of us hopes that we’ll still be remembered;
long after we’re gone to the other side.

But what if no one
visited us or mourned?
Left us for dead,
our faces forever forgotten in time.

What must it be like to have a memorial,
all painted and white,
with flowers and trinkets,
alongside a road where no one ever stops?

Chuck Connors, January 1, 2010


Gary Carden said...

I have been fascinated by the crosses in the section for years and started doing a little research on them. In my opinion, the memorial crosses are better tended than most graves. I often see fresh flowers and a bit of gardening. The highway patrolman who has a marker (and a flag) near the Canton exit has a fisherman's creel on his cross because he was a fisherman. The motorcycle enthusiast with a marker near the Hazelwood exit gets monthly visits.
Also, you have to remember, all of those people are buried in a cemetery somewhere. The crosses are a kind of memorial kept by loved ones.

Glenda Council Beall said...

Those white crosses along highways never touched me until I saw the cross for a teenage girl from our town. I read the comments in the newspaper and read the grief stricken words her mother poured out in rough poetry about once a month in our weekly.
Now those crosses make me stop and think about families and those killed at that place.
I relate to your thoughts in your poem.