Location: Sacramento, California

I am a retired lawyer and administrative law judge, aged but active, with a variety of interests.

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Moonlight and Roses (poem)

Moonlight and Roses

One day in late October
1945, in fire-bombed Yokohama,
in Occupied Japan,

I heard the sounds of joy -
loud whistling and applause -
and so I stopped and parked

my jeep and walked into a
theater, packed to overflowing
with American G I s.

The tenor Lanny Ross held sway,
now ended his performance
by singing us his theme, a song

well known to every one
of us: "Moonlight and Roses"
(bring memories of you).

Odysseus prayed for death,
so sick for home was he,
malign Poseidon’s prey.

We were far from that estate,
but the song’s effect was sharp:
our vaulting voices stilled -
and tears were shed in plenty.

James M. Moose


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