War Poet.ca - A CFAP Project by Suzanne Steele

the difficult part of the job

this morning I had to drive north of my city to another city 100+ kms away to teach a class. a wonderful class, filled with interesting people, to talk about the more obscure aspects of our language. a dry topic, these students endured my hours of lecture and examine. what they didn’t know, until the day was done, was how heavy my heart was at the outset of the day…

this morning the news. one of the 22e Régiment was killed. I don’t know if I met her at Wainwright last October but if I did it was only very, very briefly… still, I know her kind, I know their youth, their idealism, their sense of the brotherhood (yes, even the women infantrymen share this), I sat in the LAV with them for hours on end. I watched them sleep and joke and help each other and smoke and eat and protect each other (and me) and and and…

and I know what it is to lose a young one. I know it well. I know that every Christmas, every Easter, every birthday, every Mother’s Day, every Labour Day weekend, every holiday imaginable, will now be dyed with the colour pain for those families, as they are with our family. I know that the soldier’s family are just beginning that terrible sleepwalk through the first year, and that the second is even worse.

and today, I began my class with slides of my year with the boys just to show my students that words can take one to many incredible places. at coffee break, a woman approached me and told me that her son serves out of Petawawa and has been to Afghanistan three times and would go again. he feels a sense of purpose, meaning… the mother told me she could not look at my photos… I put my hands on her forearms and told her, “yes, mother, I understand”… especially today…

and so, today was a tough day.
it goes with the “job”
I guess

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The page you're reading contains a single diary entry entitled the difficult part of the job. It was posted here on April 14, 2009.


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