Remember when shots
were stolen,
foreign dreams left melted
in the chamber.
Left fulfilled
next to a loaded gun,
your face filmy gray
and indiscernible from the others
who were comrades in arms,
following orders.
 
Vietnamese chicken,
bombings for dinner,
next to jagged glass shards
swimming in the bottle.
 
An apartment left cluttered,
dusty and poor.
A wife left heavier.
The current dreams
weren’t so bad
when left alone,
it was the promise of future
and fear of today
that made the transition difficult,
made dreaming painful.
 
Remember,
a job to do.
A country demanding your blood.
Yet mind wanders
in the heat of the afternoon sun.
Dreaming, better places...
 
No longer a vision.
Finally unconcerned with orders,
bunker was no longer inviting,
call of home too loud,
the splash of water hit the hospital floor,
a new life waiting.

(2015)

Military, Draft, Family, Dream, AWOL, Vietnam, Soldier, Poetry, Parker, Jennings

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