Somewhere in this large field was once a grave—
so my brother says as he tells me stories
of our grandfather I had never heard—
no cemetery, just one sunken grave
that our granddad plowed around for however
long until he grew tired of losing wheat
or corn that might add a peck to his yield.
No county record, no ledger, no name—
we know only this: that a simple life
ended here long ago, plain words were said,
and a flat rock was sufficient headstone.
One day that austere mark was tossed away,
and then he strode behind the sweaty Belgians,
his half-deaf ears not quite hearing the plow
slicing untrod earth and roots and coming
just that close to breaking those ancient bones.