Colin F. Jones

BROTHERS
(For my brother Barry)

~ 1 ~

Oft I recall those youthful days of Spring
When we did mark our names on everything.
And I, in fear of being left behind,
did lose my courage, for you were so unkind.
We heard our footsteps – they followed us around;
Our scampering feet replenishing the sound
As, in the night, our minds created Ghosts
That pursued us with a will to be our hosts.
You laughed, I cried, but soon were both full tilt;
Your fearful heart ashamed with your own guilt,
As I, behind, dig lag in frantic pace
With looks of horror on my blood flushed face.
But you slowed down… you always did, you know,
For you’d never leave me where you would not go.

~ 2 ~

I was all alone when you went away, you know;
Alone and frightened but I wouldn’t let it show.
I went out there to bring fine treasures home
But found myself mere withered skin and bone.
I read your letters about your first born son,
A life of love for you had sure begun,
And I wondered if someone would love me too,
But somehow in my sad heart I always knew.
I gave so much and they took it all away
To leave me nothing, though I did often pray.
There were no friends to help me through the night
And I learned to talk, and run, and sometimes fight.
But most of all I ran from Ghosts alone
Because I had failed – so I would not go home.

~ 3 ~

I joined the army; I had always wanted to.
Well what the Hell, what else was there to do?
I did my best and made it through the trials;
Climbing walls and trudging for miles and miles.
I used the skills I already had, you see –
Hell nobody here was going to mess with me.
I did it all and stayed up with the best,
Passing with great pride their every test.
And when I got my hooks, man I was sure
That I was meant to defend my country’s shore.
So off to Malaya then Vietnam I went,
For that was where I was asked to go and sent.
And there I served my time in the field of war,
Proud to serve my country and my Corps.