Tiffani ENG 151 13 April 2009 Night and Day at the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial The Vietnam Veterans War Memorial, built in 1982, is one of the most visited individual sites in the Nation’s Capitol (War & Remembrance 1993). People take special trips to the memorial for a chance at experiencing history, others go because they lost a friend or loved one in the war and this is one of the only places that they can “visit” them. It is apparent that many people visit because there is a memorial at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History called, The Healing of the Nation (War & Remembrance 1). Here they have on display approximately 500 items that have been left over the years- 1982 through 1991- which is only a small fraction of the 25,000 item that have been left (War & Remembrance 1). When the United States decided to enter into the Vietnam War in 1965, it was not known how much damage and heartbreak the war would bring not only to the soldiers, but to the friends and families as well (The Vietnam War & It’s Impact 3). Before Americans knew it, there were 525,000 men and women that had been deployed over to Vietnam. With every deployment came a reassuring voice claiming “there is a light at the end of the tunnel”, trying to convince the United States that the war was soon coming to an end (The Vietnam War & It’s Impact 4). By 1969, more than 30,000 Americans had lost their lives, 14,500 were killed in 1968 alone (The Vietnam War & It’s Impact 6). War in any sense of the topic is tragic and pain invoking. The poems “The Crowd on the Wall” by Pamela Reidhammer-Basurtoand “Midnight at the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial” by W.D. Ehrhart, are two poems that show how much the war impacted, not only those involved, but the rest of the people that were left behind to pick up the pieces after such tragic losses. These poems have similar situation, speaker, and diction, but in the same way that they are similar, they are very much unlike one another. These authors...
Cited: Ehrhart, W.D. “Midnight at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.” Retellings: A Thematic Literature Anthology. Ed. M.B. Clarke and A.G. Clarke. Boston: McGraw Hill, 2003.912-913. Reidhammer-Basutro, Pamela. “The Crowd on the Wall.” Retellings: A Theamtic Literature Anthology. Ed. M.B. Clarke and A.G. Clarke. Boston: McGraw Hill, 2003. 915-916. “The Vietnam War and Its Impact.” Encyclopedia of American Foreign Policy. 3 vols. 2nd ed. Charles Scribner’s Sons, 2002. History Resource Center. Gale. Wor-Wic Community College Media Center . 8 April 2009. “War and Remembrance.” History Today 43 (Jan 1993): 3(1). Academic OneFile. Wor-Wic Community College. 8 April 2009.
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