The Picture

I have a picture of my father
on the trophy case in the kitchen.
It is a picture of him in uniform,
in Pisa, The Dispensary, 1st Staging
Area Battalion building, behind him.  

He is happy in that picture of him,
laughing, but he is thin, the war raging in
the mountains where Germans in uniform
have dug in. He is a survivor, which in
January 1945, made him a lucky man, my father,  

a living miracle, sent from the Battle of the Bulge
to recuperate and drive an ambulance to the front line
and bring back the wounded to a hospital tent like the one
he woke up in. Not yet twenty-three years old,
he had seen enough of the world to last him the rest of his life.