The wreaths are piling up on the curb. Flags at half-staff line streets swept and stainless. Someone asks why, the crowd murmurs. I am beyond curiosity, tired of the story that begins with Glory ends in Blood. Glory, worshiped in the streets. Glory, bought with sin, greed and the end of innocence. Glory, balm for the living because the dead do not need soothing. Glory is paid for with Blood, with youth, salvation, faith – everything, all they have or ever will have. Blood is given in our name and we can only offer up sorrow, prayers, songs, statues. Blood should bring guilt, shame, truth, but we deny, deny, deny, deny the abomination we have become. 2,000 suicides, 3,000 dead, 130,000 killed, 6 million murdered, 60 million casualties… the numbers do not lie. Will we will go on counting the dead while rain polishes their headstones smooth? So do not ask me why so many flags are at half-staff. I will not give you the answer you want to hear. I will not mock the dead with vainglorious praise. They are the mothers, fathers, sons and daughters who paid the price of Blood and I will honor them with the truth.