Something unnameable, intangible--
ethereal--fills these halls.

Enter and feel the call of the void.
Lingering spirits, whose bodies misplaced,
seek peace in retribution--vengeance.

Respect for the dead is a long held tradition--
it's basic human rights--even on the battlefield.

But in a place
where those warriors of life, pain, and suffering
sought refuge, healing, care
were confronted with the deepest disrespect for human life--
their bodies thrown in closets and empty spaces;
disregard for humanity in its most fundamental sense:
the treatment of the dead,
the disrespect for the bodies they inhabited, lived in, called their own--
worked with, made and raised children with,
fought the everyday battle--
something lingers, not just in the air.
something pervades, invades the souls of all who enter,
reminding them:

"Each person fought a battle,
and when that battle's over
they need to be treated with the warrior's code--
or the common traditional burial rites--
in which respect is paid to those who fought,
for until they receive this recognition,
they'll stick around,
reminding those who enter
of the battles they fought,
and the hardships they endured."

Until they get this recognition--
compensation for their struggles,
even just remembrance--
they'll share their experiences
with all they can
until one day,
someone understands,
and sets them free.

Respect must be paid to the soldiers of life,
for soldiers all are we
in the everyday struggle,
fighting the forces of the mean--
the average,
your neighbor,
and your best friend down the street.

(Peter S. Havens)

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