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Rated: ASR · Poetry · War · #2255196
An awful time of conflict, we sent young men and women to fight. I wrote to a love there.
"What’s Going On?"

Marvin Gaye, you told us well!
Vietnam was a devil infested hell.
Soldiers weren’t fortunate sons.
Government picked ordinary ones.

Sons of farmers and mechanics,
not those of elite college fanatics.
A rigged lottery, disguised as luck.
Privilege greased, service unstuck.

It was a terribly bloody jungle war.
Young men died in rice paddy gore.
Women, children went up in flames.
All innocents with nothing to gain.

Each year the number killed climbed up.
Naive politicians assured a windup.
Invisible blood on their hands, taking a stand.
Most of us already knew it was out of hand.

After it ended, piled bodies but no win.
The Pentagon papers told of sins.
So many years ago, heartland’s faith was lost.
Why can’t we see today’s distrust is the cost?

I understand why people wonder,
about this government they live under?
Appears we are let down time after time.
Homeless vets stand in food lines.

We don’t always get it right.
But we keep trying to find the light.
To guide us in this promised land.
Reach out, take a neighbor’s hand.

America truly is a golden place to land.
The lost flock here, cash in hand.
A chance to make your stake.
Freedom to rise, plan, educate.

Remember we all pay a price.
Caution ahead, a word of advice.
Work hard, obey our rule of law.
Looking out for each other might free us all.

By Kathie Stehr
July 2021
36 lines
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