Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Mickey's Poem...

Ed Note:  This came in an e-mail to, from Beverly Wiskow, the Southeast Regional Coordinator for Military Families Speak Out. It was originally posted, the first week of April, on Why are we in Iraq, a poetry website that  is "dedicated to giving the poets of the 21st century a place to speak out about a world consumed with war, peace, religious intolerance, military strategy, violence and hate. Here poets are free to voice how they feel, irrespective of their political allegiance".  A philosophy that is shared, here at VetSpeak. Thanks Beverly, I'm sharing it with a few friends. WH
Please read this powerful poem written by the daughter of one of the leaders of our MFSO organization.  After you have read it, think about calling your representatives in DC as you have been urged to do by every group from VFP to PDA to UFPJ to IVAW to MFSO (to VVAW - Ed).  Read Mickey's poem.  Think about her months in Iraq.   Won't you please invest just a few moments of your time to call and demand that this madness ends now.

by Mickey Clayton

Welcome home soldier,
You're just in time,
To join the recession.
They hand me a fist full of medals,
A quilt sewn by some unknown women,
A teddy bear and a paper packet,
That is my supposed guide,
To becoming a civilian again.
Assemble your skills,
Fill out an application,
This is supposed to be reintegration?
I don't know who I am anymore,
But by the gods,
I know what I am good at.
I can repair a radiator hose,
With baling wire and curses,
Under enemy fire,
Not sure that it counts,
As a recommendation.
I can ignore the stench,
Of my own friend's blood,
And lay down the fire,
Which guides us all home.
There is no neatly filled template,
That encompasses what I can do now,
There is no moment,
Where I don't reflect on my,
Oh so useless in this civilian world,
Hard won talents.
How many times have I said,
Soldiers don't make policy,
We just survive it.
There is pride in shame,
And shame in pride.
I wake in the morning,
And feel the conflict anew,
Reflecting that only those,
Who have never faced death,
Can still act jaded.
I look at my own scars,
And know that I am still alive.
What sense,
In all of this?
There are some things
too terrible to bear meaning.
I strap on the braces,
Articulated in plastic and steel,
That hold my shaky excuse of stability.
Today is the day to go out and find,
A job maybe,
Or at the very least,
A new fucking direction.
Copyright ©2010-Mickey Clayton

Beverley Whipple
SE Regional Representative
Florida Chapter Leader
MFSO Board of Directors
(352) 634-2142   (678) 720-2326