May Day 2012: Sellinger’s Round

Listen!

The Captain of the Month of May: A Round for May Day

In memoriam, again, of Edward Joseph Nilges, o anime cortese Mantoana. 1915-1945. Captain, United States Army, 442nd Regimental Combat Team (“Nisei”, “Go For Broke”). KIA 6 April 1945, Mount Folgorito, Tuscany, in a key Allied offensive that broke the Gothic Line and caused the fall of Mussolini’s northern and final republic. Silver Star: Purple Heart.

The Captain of the Month of May
Was light of heart and this he did say:
‘I shall die in April that you shall live in May!’

O Captain o my Captain, of the Month of May
Why have you returned to us to tarry and to stay
Are You not attached to Company A?

But the Captain of the Month of May
Held a secret sorrow within his heart
And he knew the soldier’s art.

The letter that doth say Dear John
Was a weight his heart upon
There’s nothing constructive about desertion
Of this we can be certain
But unlike some guy on civilian street
He had a higher duty that tasted sweet

He knew that upon the men he’d trained
Would Krupp steel and flame be rained
So he broke the last connection
With the city of Destruction,
And so heigh ho he set his foot upon
The hard high road that leads to Zion.

So the Captain of the Month of May
Did with the Nisei men tarry and stay
And in April he with them was slain
A Walther leaves little of the human stain.

He forgave the officer who slew him
He forgave the woman
He said to her Behold your son
He said to him now clean your gun.

This is why we dance a solemn Round
In sure and certain hope to heal our Wound
And in hope of some sort of salvation
For us, our communities, and our American nation.

Edward G. Nilges 1 May 2012. Moral rights asserted

Edward G. Nilges, “Study for a Portrait of Edward Joseph Nilges”, Oct 2010, pencil, pen,and Gimp, A4 size. Moral rights asserted.

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