Tim Bone

THE ANSWER

IWVPA Double Tap Award for War Poetry: November 30, 2005
Awarded: November 30, 2005
There’s a pistol on my night stand
I put it there today
Without the clip inside it
But the chambered round will stay

I carried it in combat
On my ankle, at my boot
And twice there was occasion
When I raised it up to shoot

As the years since then have passed me
It’s been rare that it’s been seen
‘Cause the times I’ve held that pistol
Became few and far between

When I picked it up this morning
And my hand wrapped right around
I was crushed with desolation
‘Cause the answer had been found

As to how to stop the problems
That so often will occur
And to stop the pain I’m causing
Unaware I’m hurting her

I have launched a mighty effort
With each day, to keep her free
Of my massive mess of damage
And this curse… P.T.S.D.

I try damn hard to speak softly
Even when there’s argument
But last night I got her crying
And my efforts all are spent

She’s done more for me in one year
Than this world in all my days
Though I try to give her goodness
Still, those tears fell down her face

She has spent her time and money
To give comfort for my pain
Overall, said very little
About when it was a strain

And I never take for granted
A single thing she’s done
But my means are very meager
And my gift has been just one

She got my word of honor
And my vow I would protect
Her life and limb and soul and heart
An oath not to neglect

When I think I’m being tender
But still true to whom I am
The words I say offend her
And she hears them as a slam

So I’m doing just exactly
The last thing I want to do
To her heart that I am breaking
It’s the one heart that’s been true

It’s the only heart I carry
Right beside my very own
And I’ve tried to show her closeness
But I made her feel alone

So before I bring to ruin
All her kindness, help and care
I’ll take responsibility
And stop her pain right there

Now I must make this decision
Not to let myself destroy
This fantastic, special woman
So, I’ll one last time deploy

To a mission that’s a clear one
With no waiting time to pace
A single, set objective
And the answer I must face

I have become the enemy
And love is what I kill
Though love is all I want to give
I’ll climb up one more hill

I’m hunting down myself this time
And when I reach the wire
The round inside that chamber lock
Will be the last I fire

This poem prompted the responses, “The Answer: A Response” ©Copyright November 29, 2005 by Mary E. Rogers and “No Question” ©Copyright November 29, 2005 by Robin Amy Bass