By Stanley Collymore
A measured tread of footsteps on
the stairs, metal caps pounding on the
stone floor: ominous echoes resounding
alarmingly, quickening the pensive heart
drumming out its tattoo on the troubled chest
of the prisoner within his guarded cell, waiting
stoically, yet fearful of the imminent confrontation:
precursor to a deadly inevitability.
Tidal waves of thoughts surge forward unchecked—
frenetic in their intensity, crashing down on the shores of
a receptive brain hopelessly at odds with reality; then fall back,
caught inextricably in the vortex of a thrashing mind. Abruptly
the orchestrated steps (choreographed by years of military
discipline) halt outside his door. A momentary pause:
deafeningly silent, and shattered only by the
cacophonous clash of metal upon metal -
discordant! jarring! brutal! proclaim
the arrival of the executioners.
© Stanley V. Collymore
In memory of the last American soldier executed by firing squad during World War II.