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A Young Veteran

by Raoul Jose Luis-y-Pelly

The years others knew as youth, I spent learning the meaning of death.

The times others spent learning to love, I passed hoping to live through endless nights.

The moments others remember as laughs in classrooms, I remember as terror in the jungle.

The instants of pleasure taken for granted by others, I remember as forgotten hopes – long ago crushed by the reality of war.

The unfulfilled dreams of others are yet to be thought by me since I am in search of my elusive youth, looking for years lost in combat, which are no more – and will never be.

Sgt. Luis-y-Pelly, Raoul Jose
3rd Force Recon. Company, 3rd. Marine Div.
Vietnam, November 10, 1969

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