Norman Hale's "We Need to Honor Our Soldiers" and Melvina Germain's "God Bless Our Veterans (Our Veterans Deserve Better)" are popular poems that honor soldiers, both living and dead. Archibald MacLeish's poem "The Young Dead Soldiers Do Not Speak" is about the need to honor the soldiers who have died in war.
Hale's "We Need to Honor Our Soldiers" asks its readers to honor all soldiers, present, future and past. Its speaker tells readers to thank and shake hands with present-day soldiers, praise the soldiers yet to serve and visit the graves of past soldiers to pay them tribute.
Germain's "God Bless Our Veterans (Our Veterans Deserve Better)" is spoken from a soldier's point of view, detailing the physical, emotional and psychological impacts that war has on soldiers. The speaker calls for people to respect both the soldiers who died in war and the soldiers who survived it, emphasizing the need to honor those who survived war before they die of natural causes.
In MacLeish's poem "The Young Dead Soldiers Do Not Speak," the speaker states that young dead soldiers speak through the silence of the night, asking the living to give their deaths meaning. Only the living can determine whether or not the soldiers died fighting for peace or nothing at all. The speaker asks readers to see the importance of dead soldiers' sacrifices.