Colin D. Halloran


The firetrucks
the candy flung.

The old men marching.

I remember, once older,
the piccolos
out of tune

as I now understand
all piccolos to be.

I remember
tractors—some with floats—
some just solo
homage to  the agriculture
that built this town

long before Benedict Arnold’s name was known
when we did not cringe at some cultural
that his acres should be shunned

before Washington stayed
and battle plans were laid.

I remember leading the drum roll
at the base of the pine
where wreaths were laid
for reasons unbeknownst to me

where tears as old as time
or so I thought

traversed the crevassed cheeks
of those who remembered.

Those who remember.
Those like me.

Those who remember
warm and sunny mornings
little league teams marching
in the late May sun.

Those who remember
church groups passing
step in time with high school bands
to bring joy to those who watch

collecting candy

on this
a welcome day off

forgetting the weight
of the wreath that’s laid

for the nameless
the forgotten
the ones who died
in sunshine
just like this.

Colin D. Halloran

Colin D. Halloran is the author of the award-winning memoir-in-verse Shortly Thereafter, which documents his time serving on the front lines of Afghanistan with the US Army. His critically acclaimed follow-up, Icarian Flux, uses metaphor, persona, and experimental form and narrative to explore life with PTSD. His poems, fiction, photographs, and essays have been published internationally and translated into multiple languages. You can find Halloran’s most-recent work in the anthologies Retire the Colors (essay) and The Road Ahead: Stories From the Forever War (short fiction).