Will I Ever Find Some Peace
Bruce A. Gaughran

I tolerated the monsoons, mosquitoes and the smell
I learned to accept the snakes, leeches and jungle-rot as well
And even though they awarded me the Bronze Star
The cursing cries of the wounded still left a lasting scar

The jungle was a foreign world with a canopy hiding the sun
Some villages were peaceful places where I could go and have fun
But itís hard to unwind where children play and Nuc Man brews
With Charlie always lurking nearby I canít afford to snooze

I trusted my senses because they helped keep me alive
But only by accepting death did I emotionally survive
I didn't like what I was becoming Ė it was disturbing to say the least
Wondering if life can be normal again once Iíve unleashed the beast

I visited the Vietnam Memorial some twenty years ago
The haunting black granite monolith tried to steal my soul
As my fingers traced over the chiseled names of men I once knew
Feelings of futility resurfaced along with anger I couldnít subdue

Even though the flashbacks are not as volatile today
The memories never disappear Ė why canít they just fade away
With visions of those distant moments still vivid in my mind
Will I ever be able to leave those thoughts and emotions behind

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