A Living Hell

Thursday Verseday with Arlinda

With Obscura’s card making event for Veterans fast approaching, this week’s blog will feature a poem from Obscura’s Spring 2013 edition depicting the struggles veterans face coming back home. Mary Ann Castle wrote “And Now Cerberus Snarls at the Door”, a powerful poem conveying the nightmares veterans face after arriving home. Instantly, the title caught my attention; in Greek mythology, Cerberus is the 3-headed guard dog of the underworld preventing the dead from escaping hell. Just picturing a creature that is fierce and feared, not to mention guarding the gates of hell, automatically hinted at the speaker’s tone throughout the poem.

In Mary Ann Castle’s poem “And Now Cerberus Snarls at the Door” the speaker states, “Three times deployed/ three times returned…no job can I get/ with this history/ drugs soothe/ alcohol dulls/ anger mounts in my throat/ everything has been stolen from me/ and now Cerberus snarls at the door.” Throughout the poem, the speaker outlines the tragedies faced in combat during the three deployments. These lines stood out to me because they convey the feeling of loss; the loss felt in war, and the loss of oneself while trying to regain life after coming home.

So many individuals fight to protect this country, to protect our freedom and our lives while risking their own. Next week, March 29th at 3:30-5pm in the faculty dining room at Lehman College, Obscura is presenting a card making event to thank veterans for all they have risked and lost while protecting this country. The speaker in Mary Ann Castle’s poem “And Now Cerberus Snarls at the Door” portrays the heartbreaking viewpoint of a veteran that has lost so much only to realize they have come home and lost the life they could have lived.

All are welcome to come join Obscura next Wednesday to help us thank the Bronx Veterans who have risked their lives to protect this country and its citizens. We hope to see you there!

~Arlinda Mulosmanaj

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