Sietze Buning’s “War and Peace”

Coming to the house for breakfast after milking,

I asked, “What star is that in the southwest, Dad,

still so bright with the sun coming up?”

That’s no star, Sietze. It’s moving and it’s coming this way.” In minutes,

a floating contraption hovered above our farm. A machine growled

and ground out a leaflet which fluttered down to the ground,

but we had no time to read it. The contraption

was landing in our pasture.

You grabbed a scythe, I a pitchfork

and we ran to the pasture. Neal, Steven,

Cornie, and seven other neighbors from farther off –

all on their way to their houses for breakfast when we were,

milking finished – had seen the same apparition in the heavens.

Neal came on foot with a haying rope for tying up whatever needed

tying up. Neal’s hobbling wife pursued him through the cornfield

calling plaintively, “Neal, Neal, are there any Germans in it?

Let me know if there are any Germans. I remember some German.

Don’t kill them right away if they speak German.” D-Day

one week past and we were all edgy. Had the Germans

elected to launch their counter offensive

in Sioux County and in our very pasture?

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