Tears in the Sand



There was a time not so long ago

When I was not the man you know

A very different version of me

That most will likely never see


And in that there is a hopeful good

Karma unforgiven even if it could

A time of such moral insanity

Riddled with crimes against humanity


Employed in a machine made to kill

Haunted by the memories still

The only excuse to make it just

It was either them or it was us


But that is the great hypocrisy

Of the oft repeated fallacy

Their wrongs I would never know

Just evil because someone said so


You can wrap it up in the flag

Or some patriotic hashtag

But just because you know the song

Doesn’t mean you must sing along


Each action taken by choice

Pretending I had no other voice

I did what was ordered of me

Now chained to gifted misery


A loved brother and son to family

And all those things he maybe

But gladly would I take his life

My contribution to continued strife


If amidst the dry and sandy sea

They could sit right across from me

Would we still kill one another

Or would we have seen a brother


I’d like to think as individuals

We would have set some new rules

A new course could then be found

Finding human common ground


Yet no matter how we wish it true

This flaw in man resists subdue

A hatred fanned so steadily

By men who take lives so readily


Around the world we would roam

Told we were protecting our home

But in this barren stretch of sand

It is they who fight for homeland


If the fight beset our own shore

Deadly evil knocking on our door

Maybe I would better understand

All those tears shed in the sand




17 Responses to “Tears in the Sand”
  1. Poignantly heart-wrenching; only someone who has shared those same boots can fully grasp the aftermath that permanently alters your life…

  2. Jim Borden says:

    powerful words. while I am a pacifist, I certainly admire, respect, and am grateful for those who have served our country. I can’t imagine the effect that war must have on those who fight. thank for your service, and thank you for putting your thoughts of the experience into words.

  3. yassy says:

    You are a man with a good heart and a strong conscience, Brad. This poem is like a cleansing , unburdening of your angst. I could feel the trauma of someone who goes through situations not in his control. It’s the wisdom in all your words that pulled at my heartstrings.
    A very happy new beginning to you , Brad. Happy new year , Poet.

  4. jupitergrant says:

    Wow. This is visceral x

  5. kristianw84 says:

    Oh, Brad. I want to hug you. Only those who have worn the uniform can completely comprehend the extent of your words. Still, your poem was heart-wrenching. ❤

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