Sgt. Nelson, KIA

by Ramon Collins

She knelt on damp ground and stared

at the name chiseled on the granite headstone. 

A stone quarried by a stranger 

and inscribed by a failed sculptor.

Amy Nelson didn't hear breezes rustle dying leaves, 

she didn't bow her head. 

She didn't feel the coldness enter her knees 

and rise up the torso to her heart.

“You are always on my mind,” she whispered.

She tried to stand but the earth beneath her knees 

held her tight.