Moral Injury Poem
Whenever I see one of those roundish yellow stickons,
framing the words “support our troops”
my guts churn,
and I burn just a little more.
The first time I saw one I had to figure it out.
Eventually I saw that it was a representation of a yellow ribbon,
and then I had to recall a song I’d heard years ago.
Tie a yellow ribbon round the old oak tree.
It’s been three long years, do you still want me.
A soldier coming home. Coming home.
Then images of a wife played by Jane Fonda.
A damaged hard shelled husband running.
A crippled Vietnam Vet played by Angelina Jolie’s father.
Then images of Dustin Hoffman and a young cowboy jigolo selling himself from some other movie.
That’s how my mind went through seeing one of those things on a car the first time.
Do you still want me.
I am not the same me anymore. Do you still want me?
I am morally injured. I have PTSD.
They are sort of same but not,
They overlap a little but not all the way.
Support our troops, tie a yellow ribbon…..
If you don’t, I’ll stay on the bus and go right on by.
Put the blame on me.