Why, Daddy, WHY?

Today I saw a Marine cry
Why, DADDY, why?

He looked so tired and beaten
But proud, I cannot deny.
Can you help me in understanding
The tear which escaped his eye?

Son he was not sad, but remembering days gone by,
Days and nights when his brothers and buddies began to die.
He remembers 'the good ole days' when they were alive;
He's missing them dearly now and asking why he survived?


He can still taste the sweat and dirt
And feel the scorching heat inside.
He stands as tall as he is able
Doing his best to express his pride.


He will never forget the pain of those days
The physical and mental both left their mark.
Too many restless nights he has tried to slay,
And yes, son, he is afraid of the dark.


He became a man in a teenager's mind
Not fully understanding his country's call to arms.
Feelings of guilt often leave him blind
But he'd do it again at the ringing of the first alarms.


He remembers too the added pain upon his return
From a portion of a nation that did not believe in the fight.
Honor, integrity and patriotism were words replaced with scorn
Believe me son, the scars are with him day and night.


My son, today you saw a proud and heroic Marine
One who keeps fighting the fight.
He's among the very best our nation has ever seen


Michael J Kuklenski, HM3 
Combat Corpsman
Vietnam 1969 -1970
USMC A/1/7