Lawerence Mize, Sr.

Bronze Star - 2,525 Points (October 29,1949 / Baltimore, Maryland)

Collision Course - Poem by Lawerence Mize, Sr.

On a Collision Course
Don't know why
Thoughts of Nam
Make me cry

Cast adrift
In a sea of the past
PTSD has claimed me
Lord long at last

Don't know where I'm going
Only where I've been
Memories of Nam
Keep reeling me in

Older now
Haven't grown
Stuck in Southeast Asia
Hearing helpless moans

Saw men die
Bore witness to it all
Like sticks of wood
They had to fall

Feel the shame
For what I've done
No one to blame
I'm the only one

Bear the guilt for leaving
Those I had come to know
I had to live
They had to go

I didn't pick
And couldn't choose
God took his numbers
They flashed them on the news

Want to let go
Be rid of the dreams
Forget the faces
Turn off the screams

I struggle to cope
Try to blend in
Be like everyone else
Forget where I've been

I'm a cook, a cop...
Neighbor's best friend
Searching for answers
Waiting for the end

Some call me hero
Don't know why
I fought to live
Tried hard not to die

I've survived
Made it this far
Fight the urge
To belly up to a bar

I stand on corners
Wearing my sign
Beg for pennies
Committing no crime

I'm housed in prisons
All across the land
Say brother...
Won't you lend me a hand

Work each day
Try to do right
Keep low key
Stay out of sight

I'm at the VFW
American Legion too
Joined the many
Part of the few

I want to understand
Know the why
My friends
Had to die.

Poet's Notes about The Poem

Poem Collision Course from Dead Men Calling. A collection of poems about my experiences in Vietnam.

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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, August 29, 2012

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