Nancy L. Meek

THE CASUALTY

You lie-in-wait each evening
for sleep to come… but not,
afraid that you’ll remember
something you forgot.

Each night, you dream this story,
replayed and played again:
You’re fighting for the glory
when soon… It starts to rain.

You’re hoping that it stops
‘cause it’s getting hard to see;
then a man beside you drops
and you’re glad, “It isn’t me!”

Breathing hard and sweating,
you bolt upright in bed,
wondering where you are
and why everything is red.

You try to move your legs,
which, suddenly… are gone;
and the man beside you begs,
“God!!… I can’t go on!”

You scream, “It can’t be me!”
But you know it isn’t true
and you cry like a baby,
‘cause you’re only twenty-two.