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Shoulders stooped…eyes downcast
Just a remnant of his past
One day there were medals pinned
Standing straight and disciplined
Before his peers and singled out
A Hero they said, without a doubt!
Now he stands…frail and stooped
Head bent down, shoulders drooped

Not wanting to remember where he's been
Trying to blot out all he's seen
What price glory…what price fame
No one even remembers his name
Where is the hero of yesterday
Is this the price that he must pay?
Where is our gratitude…where is the thanks
For risking his life in planes and tanks

Even animals take care of their young
Now he lives, forgotten…unsung
Walking the streets, hungry…forlorn
Wishing he had never been born!
Where is the hero of yesterday
Is this the price that he must pay?
For shame America…land of the free
He risked his life for you and me

How quickly we are wont to say
Whenever we see him to our dismay
“Just another vagrant today”
And avert our eyes and go on our way!”
Where is the hero of yesterday
Is this the price that he must pay?

Copright©2011

------
Grandma Bea


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Comments

The following comments are for "Fallen Heros"
by Beatrice Boyle

Vegas





Reminds me of a guy I saw in Vegas Panhandling last week.

He had a Card written saying "Ex Marine 3 Tours of Iraq"

The guy next to him had a card saying NO Lies I am broke and just need money for a drink.

Both of them looked young (30s maybe)and fit but obviously screwed up in some way.

Wonder what all the guys coming back this Christmas from Iraq will do with the rest of their lives ?

( Posted by: Fairplay [Member] On: November 3, 2011 )

Fallen Heroes
Me too Eric...I wonder if they will get any help at all from Uncle Sam when they come home!

The Veterans of WW2 fared so much better...including my husband and brother! They had the GI Bill to help with schooling and for buying a house they had a veteran's loan program...forget what it was called. But most of all...they had hero's welcome and had first priority on municipal jobs such as police and fireman.

That TRULY was the good ole days...when the country and our heroes had respect all over the world. How the mighty have fallen!!!!

Bea

( Posted by: Beatrice Boyle [Member] On: November 3, 2011 )

heros and imposters....
All of which plays out well on the moronic media newscasts today.

I am still a part of the US military today after being so involved, very closely, for38 years now

Bea, my High School English teacher tried to teach me to write what I know about and know to be factual, even if writing fiction.

While your poem is fairly well constructed, it is totally falsly depicting our fallen heros today I see them on a daily basis and have in many different locations, they do not look at the floor, that are just as patriotic and alert today as they were the early days of their military involvement. You have done them a dis-service, and I am aware that the "Hero's" you have written about are the very same liars and imposters that Fairplay mentions, and yes, they are everywhere

If you see a real and genuine ex-military hero, they will appear to be as proud as ever and maybe even more so.
Ron

( Posted by: veebdosa [Member] On: November 4, 2011 )

liars and imposters



You cant fool me..... for very long anyway.

Just ask them a couple of questions

especially "What was your Regimental Number"

No soldier sailor or Airman ever forgets that

Bit like no-one ever forgets the first time they ever make love.....

Whoops now I have gotten you all thinking of that very first time....

25 years in the Army and I am still fighting fit and smiling.

Which reminds me while returning through LasVegas Airport a chap was going through security check with a transparent plastic suit holder with a set of Blues (clearly on display) C/W badges of rank medals all gleaming..... Was I impressed nope just thought the guy was a wanker trying to gain brownie points......I didn't even assume he knew what the Army was let alone served.

( Posted by: Fairplay [Member] On: November 4, 2011 )

Fallen Heroes.
First of all...this poem was an entry into a challenge contest given the title of "The Cardboard Man". That said, you evidently haven't been visiting the streets of Newark, NJ or NYC...or any large cosmopolitan area.

The majority of these vets fought in Viet Nam and we all know how screwed up some of the became!

The Veteran's orginizations (More than Uncle Sam I'm afraid) are diligently working to find homes and shelters for these men, but because of their mental impairments (courtesty of agent orange or just recurring mental images of what they have seen) they turned to drugs and alcohol to relieve their suffering.

I'll admit...it's much better than it has been, but even a few cases are shameful in a country such as ours. Veeb...you admit you are a military man through and through and like a mother protecting her child, you only see the "good" side of it and while I can't see inside your mind...look down on them as weaklings for not being able to cope! I apologize in advance if I'm wrong~.

Eric...That's looking through a glass darkly...cynical perhaps. I have a few of those travel bags myself...they do the job and a much lower cost than others...I would assume that THAT was the reason he used them...but then...I always see the glass half full!

Thanks for your comments guys!

Bea

( Posted by: Beatrice Boyle [Member] On: November 4, 2011 )

forgotten
very, very sad commentary. wonderful poem Bea!

( Posted by: cmsmuse [Member] On: November 4, 2011 )

British Army




In the British Forces it was and probably still is frowned upon (if not still against Orders) to wear uniform or deliberately advertize that you are a serving member of the Armed forces in public unless you are on duty.

No doubt most of you will know why or could have a jolly good guess but I am quite willing to explain why this is so.

Then we have SSAFA in UK and the British Legion who support ex Services and their families as best they can. There are also the Chelsea Pensioners a sort of home for old soldiers with no family that are able to look after them.

Unfortunately there are always the hangers on that spoil it for the rest with false claims in order to make a quid or two.

But I agree with your Verse Bea... Americans should be ashamed of how their Ex Service people are allowed to sink so low.

( Posted by: Fairplay [Member] On: November 4, 2011 )

Fallen Heroes- My Humble Comments
Dear respected Beatrice Boyle,

Your poetry is indeed superb
The rhyme scheme is marvelous
Your thoughts are really wise
Please write and entertain us.

With best wishes, Thanking you, Yours truly,

mvvenkataraman

( Posted by: mvvenkataraman [Member] On: November 8, 2011 )

Hero
The definition of hero:

A person who rights Uncle Sam a blank check that says,"up to and including my life".

I saw this on the door of one of our platoon offices today and your poem reminded me of it. Love ya Grandma Bea!

Dave

( Posted by: HeRoCoMpLeX [Member] On: November 9, 2011 )

typo's abound
rights???? How about "writes"...ugh!

( Posted by: HeRoCoMpLeX [Member] On: November 9, 2011 )

Hug a Veteran today!
Wow...thank you Hero and Mvvenkatataraman for the virtual flowers...now go hug a veteran! lol

Bea

( Posted by: Beatrice Boyle [Member] On: November 9, 2011 )

Poppy Cock
Hahaha

HeRoCoMpLeX has gotten Hero and Idiot mixed up.

There were a lot of us daft enough to sign away our lives to our particular governments... that didn't make us Heroes.

Were not a vast portion of American Forces circa Vietnam conscript?

Was Ali an hero going to Jail instead of Vietnam ?

Was Canada a hiding place for draft dodgers ?

The sad thing with the Armed Forces in relation to civy street is that the hourly rate of pay does just not add up... bordering on Slave Labour.... Then unlike many other "Service Industries" in Civy Street There are no "Tips" to make up the Poor Pay

The only tip I can give is "Keep Your Head Down"

One is still "Not Amused" at having to fight against ones own British Government even more than the IRA when serving in Northern Ireland......

Heroes do exist of course and families of heroes.... The best just wont admit it !!!

( Posted by: Fairplay [Member] On: November 9, 2011 )





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