Gary Jacobson


Lucy’s in the sky with diamonds
To a land where this gung-ho naive boy transcends…
This boy-next-door heading for the glory of war
To adventure doing his patriotic chore
Echoing glorious exploits patriot’s bore…
Exciting with trepidations of what Vietnam has in store.

Don’t worry soldier
Oh my brave stout warrior…
You came over here so brave
A brave young nation to save.
It will be alright…
Just lose yourself in the freedom fight.

So full of gung-ho innocence
So full of the young’s righteous abhorrence
For oppressive warlords holding abomination
Come now in Vietnam to fight that evil minion
Part of a new army coming
Through sweet-and-sour skies to the rescue flying.

Don’t worry young soldier
Mankind’s savior
You’re America’s best
By bounteous life blest
Come to right the world’s grievous wrongs
Singing in your breast liberty songs.

You’ve seen patriotic duty clear
Devoted a short time year
To renounce the evil you forswear
On broad shoulders democracy bear
Surely you’ll know no fear…
As you bite malefactors in the rear.

But then you see your best buddy die
Horribly. Bloodily. Try not to cry…
As you say goodbye to your brother…
Then you kill your first man… then another
The oppressive fear of death you hide
Under foolish wilting pride.

Soon you learn war’s an ogr’ish beast
War its killing feast
As all around people die
And you lie…
Whispering, cursing, “It don’t mean nuthin’”
Knowing in reality, it means everything.

Here comes the sun
Here comes the sun
Real with every breath
So real the specter of death
Where cares of infected day fester in long, lonely nights
This campout with brothers gets us through the frights.

Deny intrepid dread grown weary to the bone
Fear’s specter threatening your very soul to own
Walking the park step-by-step disillusioned
You know, everywhere you go, you’re shadowed
By men covenanted to your death preoccupied
Men dedicated to your obliteration committed.

You’re a veteran now. Dinky Dau!
Where warriors no longer worry about democracy
Nor winning freedom in liberty.
For old warriors fight only for their brothers
Hope only to survive to return to mothers
Hope only to catch that great silver bird across the pond
To escape to the land of the giant PX abscond.

Lucy still fills the sky with diamonds
Where sparkling, withering, blistering heat never ends
Monsoon rain never ends
Humping the park in Vietnam never ends
Repressed fear of death never ends
Till with sharp report or dull thud
Sudden or dreadfully slow in sweat, mud and blood…
It ends!