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Book Project Inspires War Veteran to Write

Army Maj. Robert Schaefer's poem "Clusters" is featured in the book Operation Homecoming: Iraq, Afghanistan, and the Home Front in the Words of U.S. Troops and Their Families.

The book is the culmination of a multi-year NEA effort to encourage members of U.S. armed forces to put their experiences — about Afghans, Iraqis, battles, boredom and being back home — into words.

Authors such as Tom Clancy and Mark Bowden conducted workshops on bases. Thousands of service men and women submitted their written work, and the best was compiled into the book.

Since writing the poem, Schaefer finished his tour in Iraq and completed a Master's Degree at Harvard Graduate School for Arts and Sciences.

He now works as a Foreign Area Officer specializing in Russian and Eastern European affairs at the Defense Threat Reduction Agency near Washington, D.C.

Schaefer is currently working on a book, and he's also the Senior Editor for the Telicom, a semi-monthly publication for the International Society for Philosophical Enquiry.

This series is produced by Barrett Golding of HearingVoices.com.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Barrett Golding
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