Heroic Virtue

There are those who walk among us
Each generation seems to have them
We create words to elevate them
But still they walk, with a battle within
Some greater, some lesser, yet held within
For they are the ones who have seen the worst
Witnessed the strife that can be inflected man on man
Reduced to a level of savagery too hard to describe
Again they walk among us daily, silently holding all within
We see only generalities of their deeds
We place on them virtues that outdistance those of ordinary men
Yet, we don't tread beneath the surface
To ease the burden which they struggle to carry silently within
They live with the dreams of their time spent in war's nightmare
Of when sights and sounds brought such pain
What man can do to man in a horrifying exercise of waste
Over and over total terror had engulfed them
Only to have it renew each day, after day
Yet, they walk among us, silently holding all within
They gave of themselves when called
Some surrendered their values
Others their innocence
Many gave their will at all cost
Without regard of self
These are no ordinary men who walk among us silently.

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