Poetic Journey in Personal Discovery

Warrior’s Stain…

The distant, setting sun, cools the heated hearts

The red sky in its fury, accents the blood stained parts

The clouds once white and clear, are scared with red and gray

Another battle completed…but only for this day…


Atop a cliff he stands in reflection

Torn skin and bloody clothes

With head held low in exhaustion

Angst and ambivalence grow


He strokes the mane of his horse

Each motion, his only anchor to reality

Burdened spear in his grasp

Fresh with death, and with fear dripping                                 


He is a strong and proud man

He is unwavering in his convictions

Yet when he closes his eyes to sleep

His nightmares prevent his rest therein


Images of the enemies eyes upon their demise

While they strive to fight and live

He feels the warmth of their blood

Unsure if it’s theirs or his


The deafening cries of anger and pain

Become lost in muffled clouds of confusion

Kill the enemy; live to fight again

His practiced craft for restitution


Once he returns home,

The embrace of his children offer revival

War is not pleasing to his soul

But he wishes his future generations freedom and survival


I wonder if the war within is more tragic

I wonder if he can turn off the inner turmoil

If he can stiffen with functional rigidity

If there are moments when tears threaten to uncoil


I wonder if he could ever admit it

If assigned expectations would allow for supposed weakness

My heart aches to consider that kind of lot

Holding onto, and nurturing daily, that unwelcomed darkness


If I could express compassion

Enough to remove even a small amount of his pain

I’d encapsulate it and send it with him

In hopes of diminishing the warrior’s stain

©E.D. Allee

Revision from 1993


This is a revision of a poem I wrote when I was 17.  Based on a painting my brother had hanging in his room. It was an image of a Native American man, spear in hand, one hand on his horse- on a high cliff looking out over beautiful mountainous terrain. I saw the intensity of his expression from his profile alone.  Just so pensive and seemingly solemn. The sky was soooooo rich in reds, like fire. That was the inspiration. 


Comments on: "Warrior’s Stain…" (4)

  1. Impressive. Very well written! The wealth of imagination you conveyed did the inspiring image justice. 😀

  2. It is very nicely done, it made me think of our native American heritage on my mom’s side…I enjoyed it much! Hugs my sister!

    • Thanks. Was a picture of a person I could easily “jump in to”. The hardships of people over history… Makes me grateful for the things I DO have, and puts my challenges in perspective!

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