Where do the souls of heroes go
in God’s glorious expanse….
I see them not, but still I know
they join the breeze in a tranquil dance,
to grace the mountains’ falling snow,
where restful souls of heroes go.
These spirits dwell in the sacred land,
secret wisdom hovering near.
Laced in the waves that bathe the sand,
or a touch, a thought, a single tear,
holding Nature’s tender hand—
the spirits who dwell in the sacred land.
Breathe their strength, inhale their peace,
to ease your grieving mortal mind.
Let go your battles, accept release;
find refuge in the faiths entwined.
Your inner struggles slowly cease--
inhale their strength and know their peace.
Who wears the hero’s mantle now
when fires rage and doubts prevail….
The virtues of the earth cry out
to draw on powers that never fail.
Courage, caring, and love allow
for you to be the hero now.
Human essence never dies,
born anew at the crest of dawn,
to soothe the child’s lonely cries.
The gift of hope, with sadness gone.
Life and honor, spirits wise,
The hero’s soul that never dies.
2001 C. Tveit
Author's note: What's eerie about this poem is that I wrote it on July 11, 2001 -- exactly one
month before the 9-11 tragedies. It was first published online on a tributes page after 9-11,
then it was solicited for online publication by a website called Realfirefighterstories.com,
which is no longer on the web. I dedicate it to all past, present, and future firefighters,
and members of our armed forces--today's heroes.