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Homeless Vets

By Dale Andrews

Gold Great Seal of the United States American eagle design with bald eagle holding an olive branch and arrows with American flag shield. With E pluribus unum scroll and stars glory over his head.

Homeless Vet’s, Sidewalk sleeping,

under bridges and city streets,

tossing and turning,

on cardboard mattresses

under newspaper bed-sheets,

wet, cold, curb black snow

dreaming of a cold dumpster,

nightmare breakfast, first eaten by first ladies

the night before as fine dining.

Returning Vet’s

never whining, or even talking

to no one who knows to listen

Lost, Forgotten

Brave, young soldiers

trained by the best, ready anxious to kill

or die, for Mom America and Apple pie.

So long ago, Home Sweet Home

where the heart is warm by the fireplace

under the cedar tree, joy, laughing, loving, family

Childhood over so fast,

America, Welcome Home

from War.

Brothers bathed in blood,

Crying, dying in our arms,

bombed napalmed babies

of the enemy and friendlies,

screaming so loudly they’re

heard throughout infamy

from empathy we built The Wall

back home near Arlington, where

Fallen and Unknown Soldiers

from all wars spend eternity.

Their stories written on

crinkled paper bed-sheets,

complete with death pictures

in living color,

tell of a new War on TERROR, lasting terror

like in all wars, repeat blood, bomb, blunders

leaving amputees, filling VA hospital beds

Discharged with whiskey money,

broken Hero’s with piles of pills,

and Purple Heart pins,

new shiny legs to stand on

until no longer being able to

stand the flashbacks.

Years on years, of ringing ears

hurting heads and hurting hearts,

of loved ones wondering where

and how we are, Fearless rage even

jails and shelters can’t contain.

out of money, out in the cold

no one to help, no where to go,

lost lives, lost souls, forgotten soldiers

except in stories, written on newspaper bed-sheets

that no one ever reads.

Copyright 2018 by Dale Andrews

Medic, 1st Infantry Division

Vietnam 1967-1968

U.S. Army Specialist Dale Andrews served our country in the Vietnam War, and received the Bronze Star Medal for valor under fire.

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