Christina A. Sharik

VETERANS AND THEIR CHILDREN

Their innocence was taken away
by the horror of a war –
it doesn’t really matter now
what they were fighting for.

because they came home damaged
and as a daughter and a son
we wonder how things might
have been, if he had never gone.

They tried to shield us
from their nightmares
to protect us from the pain;
But we heard it many evenings
again and then again.

Cries in the darkness
Night terrors and screams
alcohol and anger
Terrible dreams.

Who is this person
we want to love so?
We know he loves us,
but why doesn’t it show?

If they could just tell us
what happened to them
we’d be so grateful
to know the real “him” –

We’d share the sorrow and
understand shame
that causes the nightmares
the horror and pain…

the yelling and fighting
the drinking and crying
we might understand the agony
that caused all the dying…

of tasting the fear
and losing a friend
and fighting the War
that never will end.

If they’d only speak
so that we could know ~

Where God, oh where
did our dear fathers go?