Christina A. Sharik

TODAY

Today I received a letter
the top corner just marked “Free”
I always get a jolt or two –
The years have been 33…

since I first got Free letters
and my heart would skip a beat
I’d go somewhere to be alone
when the baby was asleep.

I don’t know this soldier
Nor do I know his mom
But his letter took me back some time
to a place called Vietnam………

We’re fine he said, there’s sand
all over – we’re leaving some things here –
I can’t wait to get back home
and the time is drawing near…

It doesn’t matter who he is
or where his boy is now
I’ll write him back a letter
and ask him “how’s the chow”?

I have a box of goodies
waiting for your next address
It won’t be Free, I know that,
Never Free, but nonetheless

You are the same as any
soldier; any I have known
My ex-husband and my own son
too far away from home…

I’m keeping the “Free” letters
that aren’t really Free
For Freedom is quite costly
paid for – by you, and me.