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Ode to a Gold Star Pin

A dime-size pin given to families who've lost loved ones in war holds a lifetime of sorrow

By Vivian R McInernyPublished 7 months ago Updated 7 months ago 1 min read
Ode to a Gold Star Pin
Photo by Hikarinoshita Hikari on Unsplash

On her shoulder, a gold and purple pin,

unimpressive in its size.

A wreath of laurel holds within

a small gold star, unnoticed by most eyes

The decorated generals praise skills of killers and machines designed for death

And in their next breath, declare peace and prosperity for their once mortal enemy.

And formally present to her, a pin, while she, broken wife and widow, washes hands with the madness of Ms. Macbeth

To scrub for all eternity at a sadness for which there is no remedy.

Only a prickled pin, she wears now not with pride,

or to wallow in past sorrow.

But to carry love for one who died

into their unshared tomorrows.

inspirationalslam poetrysocial commentarysad poetryheartbreak

About the Creator

Vivian R McInerny

A former daily newspaper journalist, now an independent writer of essays & fiction published in several lit anthologies. The Whole Hole Story children's book was published by Versify Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2021. More are forthcoming.

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Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

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  1. Excellent storytelling

    Original narrative & well developed characters

  2. Expert insights and opinions

    Arguments were carefully researched and presented

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    Niche topic & fresh perspectives

  1. Heartfelt and relatable

    The story invoked strong personal emotions

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Comments (5)

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  • Vivian R McInerny (Author)7 months ago

    The title should read ODE TO A GOLD STAR. This is kind of frustrating. A widow is not an object.

  • Tiffany Gordon 7 months ago

    Poignant, gorgeously written & insightful!

  • Novel Allen7 months ago

    Well, whatever it is, it still speaks to the ridiculous loss and pain of war. Why are we, in this modern age, still waging wars and killing innocent people. Leaving the horrors to be bourn by those left behind, while the families of the warmongers are safely tucked in bed.

  • Oh wow. You packed so much of emotions into this poem! Heartbreaking yet beautiful!

  • Sorry for the ridiculous headline but Vocal bounced this poem back three times as suspicious of being AI generated. I tried multiple headlines -- evidently there is an army-sponsored site with poetry and some poems refer to gold stars. My poem is personal and fictionalized. I am a gold star sister and wrote this from the perspective of a gold star widow. I'm afraid if I try to change the headline, I'll be back to the crazy AI loop detective.

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