The Arts of War

Silhouette of a soldier against the sun.

Words, Images, Memories, Declarations

A former Army officer and former English instructor at the United States Military Academy, West Point, New York, Peter Molin has committed himself on his blog, Time Now: The Iraq and Afghanistan Wars in Art, Film, and Literature, to presenting—and commenting upon—the best that artists in the United States, many of whom are combat veterans themselves, are producing about the world of War post-9/11.
Of note: check out his end-of-year reference list of notable works, entitled, “2015: An Updated War Literature and Art Compendium.
In this blogI have written in the past about my experiences working with combat veterans who have been struggling with their combat trauma. I did my best to speak honestly and openly about the effect that these men and women had on me as we worked together to find more meaning-filled lives for them.
As I say in the “About ‘My Philosophies'” page, however, I have taken a break from that type of writing:

Indeed, I do believe that whatever power lay in my blog posts lay in the very truth of that I did try to convey: these men and women affected me. They made me laugh. They irritated me. They touched my heart. A few, to this very moment, bring a tear to my eye in the middle of typing at a Starbucks, knowing that there will never again be an opportunity for a coffee and a what’s-up between us.

I feel no need to apologize for that.

Yet by making our personal interactions so public, even with their blessing, I am, in a way, saying that I can extract enough from their words to speak a truth about them and not just about me, that I can add my words to their experiences and somehow publish something that says something truthful about War.

I do hope my words have said something truthful about caring. I question whether they have ever said something truthful about War.

Most of those on Mr. Molin’s list, however, can readily claim to speak a truth of War, even if none of us will ever fully be able to articulate all its truths, whether individually or corporately.

Throughout that list are many who have engaged survival. Even if life is not always energized as a “feel-good” in such endeavors, it is always energized as a “feel-known.”
And whether or not that feels good: good, it is.
To your reading, to your watching, to your lives, I say,
Until tomorrow, be well,
Doc

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