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War Wounds

By       Message Jim Bush     Permalink
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War Wounds

Quietly, he sits in his wheel chair
Missing one eye, one arm, and one leg
"Could have been worse", he thinks
"At least I can walk on one leg, use one arm, and see with one eye"

"Imagine losing two eyes, two arms, or two legs"
"Or even two eyes, one arm, and one leg"
"Or one eye, two arms, and one leg"
"Or one eye, one arm, and two legs"

"But what would be the the worst case?"
"Losing two eyes, two arms, and two legs?"
"Or would the worst case be losing your face as well?"
"Or would it be losing your dick?"

"How about losing only your face or your dick?"
"How would that be?"
"And who decides these things?"
"Who sets it up?"

"I mean, who decides where the shrapnel hits?"
"Who decides what, or who, it will take?"
"An eye, an arm, a leg, a face, or a dick?"
"One dead, two wounded, three OK"
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He just sits there, with one eye, one arm, and one leg
"At least they're balanced", he says out loud
"Right arm, left leg, not so bad"
"Wish I could get back to my unit"

His mother weeps
"At least he's alive", she thinks
His father, arm around her, says, "I'm proud that he did his job"
His girlfriend, sitting nearby, wonders what it will be like

He returns to sitting quietly
The TV is on
The News reports that another Humvee has been hit by an IED
He listens for unit designations and the names of friends

He fidgets in his wheel chair
"My head hurts", he says
He grabs the TV remote
And turns to the Cartoon Channel

He starts to laugh uncontrollably
Courage the Dog is being blown to bits on the TV
He leans forward, laughing
While his family sits back and watches, quietly
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Jim Bush is a 67 year old, Vietnam-era veteran, currently living in Texas. He was raised in a military family. His father received the Silver Star for directing troops while under air attack at Clark Field in the Phillipines, survived the Bataan (more...)

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