Frank J. Montoya


He looks into the mirror and what does he see?
He says: “I know that guy who’s looking back at me”.
The face has changed so much throughout the years.
It shows lines of laughter and wrinkles…caused by tears.

He remembers when he was just nineteen:
He’d had enough of home; he would split the scene.
Where to go? No training, no skill or craft.
He said: “I’ll join the Army and beat the Draft”.

His eyes tell the story of his life;
The joy, and happiness, the pain and strife:
Marriage, then children… what wondrous times:
Duty assignments to various lands and climes.

Then a yearlong “vacation” in South Vietnam,
It’s a futile war, but no one gives a damn.
Friends you saw this morning are gone tonight…
killed by sniper, by rocket or in a fire-fight.

He came home and retired. A new career… but, gee!
Civilian life sure ain’t what it oughta be.
Then tragedy strikes, and a daughter is gone;
In an auto accident just, before the dawn.

The book of life is turning page by page,
And now he’s finally reached that ‘Golden Age”.
Grandchildren grown, so beautiful, so tall;
And a great-granddaughter will be here this Fall.

As he sees his reflection in the looking glass,
He recalls the many things that have come to pass.
Then the image there looks back at him… and smiles,
And says: “The road before you still has many miles”.

Submitted for the July 2003 IWVPA Club Theme Project, “Reflections