Colin F. Jones

THE TOXIC FLOWER OF VIETNAM

PTSD is a kind of plant that grows in Vietnam,
it has no form that you can see but it hates old Uncle Sam.
It sort of creeps into the brain and messes with your heart,
that all you do is cry, complain, and tear yourself apart.
For a time it, dormant, lies and spreads its roots, and sows
its seeds inside your common sense while fertilising woes.
It tests its progress now and then with flashbacks in the brain,
and tries to make its lifetime host think that he’s insane.
As it grows so does the pain that more frequently desires,
to cause distress in loves enclaves where glows your warmest fires.
It surges up like a giant tide of toxic cobaltic waves,
That all its hosts, to its infant surge, become its reluctant slaves.
… and all we can do is ride the surf until we reach the battered beach,
where for an ever-reducing time we bask there out of reach.