Letters from Saigon

saigon

A tearful museum of love, a handful of broken rain. Too delicate to swim, they both float in their pain
Sometimes it just seems too hard to go on
Stuck in a prison
Conquered by a vision
Reading the letters they got from Saigon

She recalled the sound of a doorbell cough ominous
Two silhouettes lurking from the shadow of moon
The Radio strained to obscure the sound of bad news
Words came in choking through sorrow filled gloom
Surrealistic two men stood looming in military dress
Bearing the words the family prayed never come to the door
Disregarding compassion reality entered into their home
To hug their baby boy in their arms nevermore

I hurt so much so please hold my hand
We both need something to help carry on
In the top of her closet a box full of tears
She showed him the letters she got from Saigon

Dreams are scorched when silence is at hand
Once the shootings over ain’t nothing left to be said
We sing some numbered songs whisper baby what’s next
Time to raise up love and then bury our dead
Struggling to understand why the end came so mean
While watching repeats of the squealing baby they tossed
One day brings the sleepless night playing on loops
Another day brings dark visions of a little boy lost

You can’t hold hands with a memory
You need to find some way to go on
In the top of her closet a box full of tears
As she re-reads the letters she got from Saigon

Always the rock dad must remain solid and strong
Can’t allow weakness just because life isn’t fair
Carrying the load for the son another’s war killed
Tortured alone every day with his own cross to bear
With a shake of his head his father cried silent
Promised for his family he would always fight on
Hidden in his workbench one envelope of tears
His son’s final letter that was sent from Saigon

Dear Dad,
Please don’t tell this to Mom. Three days ago one of our troops went out to another village and were blown up by a booby trap. They all died. Two days ago a sniper from the village shot and killed ten of my brothers, one of them right in front of me. Yesterday my best buddy Frank stepped on a landmine and lost his leg. A Hell of a way to get home right? All I could think was it could have been me Dad. My Sergeant got so angry he ordered one group to kill all the civilians in the village, women and kids too. They did it Dad, they killed them all, it was plain out and out murder. I’m so ashamed. I didn’t even try to do anything to stop it. I hate myself for that Dad. I wish I could come home to talk with you. We’re all afraid to talk about it because they might send us up to the DMZ. I wish I could talk to you to tell me the right thing to do Dad, I feel so lost and lonely. There is nothing but blood and death here in the jungle I just want to come home Dad. I hate it here. I’m trying to keep strong but I’m scared. Everyone around me is dying. Can’t sleep because of the fear and explosions. Please ask Father Duncan to pray for my soul and please don’t tell Mom. I don’t want her to worry. Be home soon Dad, I love you.
You’re Son,
John

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