You could tell from several feet away, –he had not bathed for a while,
But maybe soap and water did not really suit his style.
The worn out ‘combats that he wore with medals on his chest,
Did not fit too well with his unkempt grey hair and tattered thermal vest.
“I didn’t fight for nothing! My life was not a waste of time!
I fought for this great country and this country is still mine!
I got this medal from the Queen!”, he said, Her Majesty, Herself!
It’s not Her fault that I got injured and could not support myself!”
“I take the blame for everything that I have done,
I take responsibility for everything that my poor life has now become.
You cannot blame the government if you should foolishly get lame.
You need two legs to get up on your bike – it’s only me to blame.”
“I almost got to cheer the Royal wedding, but the policeman moved me on.”
“I didn’t have a decent suit to wear”, he said, “and so, I moved along.
I used to have a sleeping bag and tent to keep me warm,
But when I came back to my spot, my valuables were gone!”
“I’m getting careless now and I suppose the time has come to just call it a day.
It’s such a shame, – I’d hoped to see our country great again before I had to fade away.
The world was ours, and I was proud to travel far and wide to fight!
I don’t suppose you’d have some cash to buy a nip to keep me warm tonight?”.
Patrick W Kavanagh
Image by Ronnie K Pixabay