Poems of a Soldier by Ben Ehrlich

After I came home from the war,

I tried to write a few poems

that would capture my general feelings on things,

which,

to be perfectly honest,

could be summed up in a

general distaste

for other people.

 

A fat man from Maine

with a big check book

and a bad heart

told me that he would like to take my poems

and put them into a little book

with a paper cover

and call it

Poems of a Soldier.

 

I said,

okay.

 

A lot of people bought the fat man’s little paper book,

and a lot of people read my poems

and slowly took on my feeling

of general distaste

towards everyone.

 

A few months later,

the fat man came back to me

with a big check

and said, here you go,

this is yours,

you’ve earned it.

 

And I took the check,

and used it to buy food.

 

Two months later

the fat man’s bad heart gave out

and he died while on the toilet.

 

I went to his funeral,

and I looked at his family,

the tears rolling down their cheeks.

He was just another casualty,

but I cried for everyone lost.

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