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Awakening
A Sleeping Giant

By James Merrill

It was an early Sunday morning back in 1941; the Pearl was peaceful, quiet as she greeted the rising sun.

The harbor waters were calm, there was stillness in the air, and crews aboard their ships had not a worry or a care.

The Arizona was a beauty, proudly anchored below the morning skies, the Utah and Missouri anchored near her awaiting their crews to rise.

No one had a clue that peaceful morning the terror soon to come, the roar of airplane engines sounded like the beating of a thousand drums.

The day that would live in infamy would soon be here, when that roar off in the distance was now so very near.

A sleeping giant would be awoken as one Japanese Admiral would soon say, and it brought our great country united on that terrible and dreadful day.

From farms and mountain valleys, from sea to shining sea, young men came by the thousands to raise their right hands and take an oath so one day we’d all be free.

They fought on islands scattered along South Pacific shores, like Saipan, the Marshal Islands, Guadalcanal, Corregidor.

Dedicated nurses cared for the wounded as battles would rage on; God bless those nurses who gave so much, each and every one.

Young men landed on beach heads along the shores of Normandy, they fought in open fields of France and in thick forests of Germany.

God Bless them all and we thank them all, it because them America is free.

James Merrill is a military veteran, and shared this poem for Memorial Day.

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