....the Living Memorial Sculpture Garden

Lot's of years back I was looking for a labyrinth to walk between here and my sisters home in Klamath Falls, OR.  I was a member of the Labyrinth Society and went to their list to find one.  I printed out a map.  It is just a small wooden sign that alerts you to pull off the highway...After walling the lovely little Chartes Labyrinth, my companion and I started down a path to view the sculptures.  I had no idea how profound of and experience it was going to be.  The artist says everything a feel about war.

The Why? Group

The Garden is one of the most holy places I have ever been. It's quiet there. I can hear whispers in the wind. The sculptures are alive and the tribe has gathered.
The place makes me want to kneel down and give thanks to all the men and women who have given so very much to this country. And at the same time I cry in anguish for my part in the American war machine and all of it's destruction.

Why? Group

Living Memorial Sculpture Garden
Weed, CA.
at the foot of Mt. Shasta

After all the deeds are done and the soldier goes back home, sits alone in front of a warm fire on a cold night having time to think his own thoughts, he may ask himself a few questions. "Why me?" "Why not me?" "why him and not me?" "Why war?" "why not war?" The WHY questions are endless.

Dennis Smith, Artist LMSG:
Each sculptures has personal meaning for me in terms of life experience and personal incidents. Everyone who has experienced war seems to have a place in their collective heart which is malfunctioning. Maybe what we should do is find that place in the heart and have it surgically removed. Through the arts we have the means to peacefully consider violence and to ask questions as well as offer possible solutions.

I don't think the purpose of art is to entertain, but to uplift, edify, and educate. After seeing "Bill" and Ted's Excellent Adventure," I believe the fate of the world might ultimately have to do with what happens in our history classes. Maybe our world leaders should start asking the young people what sort of world they want.


While Vietnam Memorials
 were popping up like mushrooms in the mountains after an August thunderstorm, 
who remembered the Korean Vets? We did.

The Pow-Mia
This statue is for all those who have been wrongfully locked up. Imagine confinement, mosquitoes, leeches, rats, rotten rice, rotten fish, abusive guards, and little chance of survival. Hope is reaching for the will to "Hang On!"

Greatest Generation


The Refugees

I stood beside the road at KHE SANH as the BRU Tribesmen were herded through the base and onto route nine to fend for themselves. 
Our leaders had promised them protection; They were our allies and we let them down. A large percent of these people, men, women, children, the old, 
and the very young never made it past the N.V.A.
 I was also thinking of the Kurdish people during the Gulf War, and the treatment of the native American in "The Long Walk" or "Trail of Tears."

Coming Home

 There are some things about which one should either say a great deal, or nothing at all. "Coming Home" is very special to me, and I can speak a great deal about it. It is not uncommon for Veterans to feel a lot of emotional pain upon returning home. 
In this regard I am no different from any other retired warrior. I feel more fortunate than most because sculpture is a positive way for me to deal with this pain. 
Being a part of the LMSG gave me an opportunity to speak in a good way. 
I feel as if this expression is a giant leap forward in the process of "repairing my soul."



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