Published November 13, 2013, in Yes! Weekly
Caught in a dugout — surrounded by enemy fire and kneeling over the remaining pieces of a comrade — a soldier toughens up to survive. Stationed at home with the duty of worrying, a mom awaits her son’s hopeful return from overseas.
No matter the time or circumstance, war touches everyone.
But only those closest to it can really know the depth of its emotional effects.
Attempting to help close the gap between civilian and veteran, Touring Theatre of North Carolina is hosting a staged reading of poetry and prose written by veterans and their family members. Deployed is a one-hour compilation of work — chosen from a call for entries this summer — that depict the experiences of seven wars: World War I, World War II, Korea, Vietnam, First Gulf War, Iraq and Afghanistan.
The entries are fused into a fluid performance by North Carolina poet laureate Joseph Bathanti and Touring Theatre founder Brenda Schleunes.
The goal was to “juxtapose war against war,” Schleunes said.
“Not to order the entries chronologically. War is war, and the effects are the same.”
It is for this reason that Schleunes and Bathanti beautifully edited and ordered the literature and personal experiences so that they would form a more general timeline: pre-war, battle, going home and the aftermath…