June 1, 2010

My tears are not for your camera



"My tears are not for your camera!", scolded a distraught Vietnam veteran who'd caught me photographing him tearing up at a Memorial Day peace rally. I apologized immediately and backed off. I don't like to upset anyone, least of all an emotional veteran on Memorial Day.
But what I really wanted to say was - Yes, they are! My dear veteran, don't you realize that your tears - no doubt produced by recalling wars horrors, translate into a visceral pain that holding candles and singing songs simply do not? Your tears represent the thousands of great servicemen, servicewomen and civilians lost to wars past, present and future. Your tears beg our leaders to put an end to these wars and stop voting for them to continue. Without your tears and the bravery behind them, Memorial Day would be just another superfluous holiday. Your tears are gems, melding humanity with the insanity of war.

3 comments:

Owen said...

Very touching Heather...

Tears for Fears : It's a Mad World...

Jorge said...

on a MUCH lighter note.. sometimes its just better to use a longer lens.. ;)

...louciao... said...

Powerful piece, image and words.