Dear Readers: In honor of Veterans Day, here is one of our favorite pieces, written by John Alton Robinson of Monroe, La.
From the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier
To the silver-haired crowns of our fathers
From the shores of Tripoli
To the Pacific’s pearl-green waters
I wish to give a tribute
A four-starred salute today
For those who fought so bravely
For our freedom and American way.
We take our rights for granted
But they were earned in blue-red blood
And courage beyond the call of duty
In France’s cold wet mud.
Beginning with the Revolution
Through the Saudi Arabian sands
Men have fought and suffered
And died on foreign lands.
So salute this Veterans Day
And many more to come.
Through blood and guts and glory
Our freedom has been won.
Dear Annie: Please permit me to use your column to address my grown children.
Dear Kids: Father’s Day and my birthday have come and gone, and I didn’t hear a word from any of you. Christmas is coming, and I expect more of the same.
You are not orphans. You didn’t rear yourselves. You didn’t come out of an abusive home. I worked hard to give you the best of everything, from designer clothes to Ivy League educations. I was involved in all of your activities when you were growing up, and I was at the head of your dinner table every evening. All you ever got from me was kindness and concern. And I fully respected your mother, regardless of what you may think.
It’s hard to be old and alone, which is why my lady friend has assumed such a prominent role in my life. You may not like her, despite her many kindnesses to you, but she is here for me, and you are not. When I have been sick or injured, she alone has cared for me. The only times I hear from you are when you want something, usually money, which brings me to another topic: my will.
While you may regard my lady friend as a “gold-digger,” whatever gold there is belongs to me. It is not your money. I am free to do whatever I want with it. Of course, I would love to hear from you, which is why I am constantly reaching out, only to be met with silence. My heart will always be open to you.
— Love, Dad
Dear Dad: We can feel your anger and bitterness through your words. We don’t know what precipitated your estrangement, but kids can hang onto a lot of resentment for a very long time. You want them to be warm and respectful, but they may have reasons for keeping an emotional distance. Reaching out may require apologies and forgiveness all around. Please try again, but this time, be vulnerable enough to let them know you want to be closer, and ask how best to achieve it.
Annie’s Mailbox is written by Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar, longtime editors of the Ann Landers column. Email your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org, or write to: Annie’s Mailbox, c/o Creators Syndicate, 737 3rd Street, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254. 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.
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