Posted: Thursday, November 11, 2010 8:01 pm
Dear Annie: Years back, Ann Landers printed a poem my father wrote for his own newspaper column. With Nov. 11 approaching, I thought you might like to print it again. — Randy Vaincourt
Dear Randy: With pleasure, in honor of our veterans.
“Just a Common Soldier”
by A. Lawrence Vaincourt
He was getting old and paunchy and his hair was falling fast,
And he sat around the Legion, telling stories of the past.
Of a war that he had fought in and the deeds that he had done,
In his exploits with his buddies; they were heroes, every one.
And tho’ sometimes, to his neighbors, his tales became a joke,
All his Legion buddies listened, for they knew whereof he spoke.
But we’ll hear his tales no longer for old Bill has passed away,
And the world’s a little poorer, for a soldier died today.
He will not be mourned by many, just his children and his wife,
For he lived an ordinary and quite uneventful life.
Held a job and raised a family, quietly going his own way,
And the world won’t note his passing, though a soldier died today.
If we cannot do him honor while he’s here to hear the praise,
Then at least let’s give him homage at the ending of his days.
Perhaps just a simple headline in a paper that would say,
Our country is in mourning, for a soldier died today.
Dear Annie: My wife and I were childhood sweethearts, and we have been happily married for 30 years. We’ve been together most of our lives except for a brief time in our late teens, when she left me for another guy.
Here’s the problem. She still keeps some photos and memorabilia from that relationship and, on occasion, communicates with this guy via e-mail. This brings back bad memories and often makes me feel jealous and insecure. My wife says, “After almost 35 years, you should be over it.” Is she right? — Still Jealous After All These Years
Dear Jealous: You can’t help how you feel, but you can certainly put a lid on your reactions. Unless your wife is poring over these old photographs and memorabilia, ignore them. They are part of who she is and are no threat to you as long as she doesn’t shove them in your face. They should be put away somewhere. Keeping in touch with an old boyfriend is only worrisome if she hides the e-mails from you, sends flirtatious and suggestive messages, confides personal marital intimacies to him or tries to meet him secretly. Otherwise, please trust your wife to be faithful to you.
Dear Annie: I read the letter from “Uncomfortable in Florida,” who met a woman who stuttered. As a speech-language pathologist who has treated both adults and children, I agree with your recommendation not to complete the word for the person. It can be uncomfortable to see a person suffer when speaking, but patience is important. It would have been more embarrassing for the woman who stuttered to have had the word completed for her.
I would also like to recommend that those interested contact the American Speech-Language Hearing Association (www.asha.org) for additional information or call their Action Center at 1-800-638-8255. — Daily Reader
Dear Reader: Thank you for the excellent referral.
Annie’s Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Please e-mail your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org, or write to: Annie’s Mailbox, c/o Creators Syndicate, 5777 W. Century Blvd., Ste. 700, Los Angeles, CA 90045. To find out more about Annie’s Mailbox and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.
Published in The Messenger 11.11.10