Where are all the body parts?

Pieces of arms, Sets of hands, Legs, Just one foot Rib cage parts

And eyes,

Lost forever In the jungles, the deserts, the forests, the mountains

and valleys

Where are the wounded soldiers today?

They’re everywhereKillinFieldsSkells

On the battlefield screaming

At home thinking

In VA hospitals

In Nursing homes for the young

Limping along through life

In the dark

Blind in one eye and blind in two

Pieces of face burned off and

Left behind with the dreams of a “normal”life

Fortunately, I think, the torso and the head are still alive

Some will go on with life

Some will not

Their minds forever trapped In the pain and horror of split seconds

Lost with the other body parts

Men who make unnecessary war,

Do not fight them

They and theirs are back home safe

They get to keep their body parts

How can they not know?

About those precious body parts

How can you not know?

About the body parts left behind

Lost in the sand

Lost with the ignorance to the horrors of war

Lost with the confusion about patriotism

Lost among the lies and the deception

Tomorrow will bring lucrative contracts for those who make war and profit from it

Tomorrow will not bring back the body parts,

Those body parts left behind by brave soldiers

They are lost forever.

Author: Beto Conde

Beto Conde has written a series of short stories and poems about his Vietnam experience titled “Moonlight Faces.” One of the poems was selected for the tribute at the 25th anniversary of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. which he read at the event. He currently lives in the Valley and writes poetry and short stories.


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