You Walked Around Him Like He Wasn't There.......

The first thing you noticed was body odor
and the second thing the clothes
Stepping gingerly around him you
shake your head ......he knows

Don't you wish they'd just go
away.... find some one to call
He choses to be homeless as
you make you're way to the mall

But he just looks at you passively
and in the end you're okay
He didn't rise to the occasion
........just got out of the way

He spent two years in Viet Nam
and another in county jail
Untill they just let him go ........
no one would
come in to post the bail

His prosthetics are out of date his
legs are rusting and bent
And you worry about your parking
and where your paycheck went

The answers are as empty as the
shopping cart that he pushes
The place he calls home a blue
tarp tied to the bushes

He was too outdated for this war
it seems ....but thats okay
There are younger soldiers around now
you'll step over them one day


I hope to offend no one with this poem ,  we are all responsible for our own actions or inactions  in dealing with the serious issues facing our vets.  I too have avoided the  obligation at times ......this is just an observation of human nature.

Comments 26 comments

Hyphenbird profile image

Hyphenbird 5 years ago from America-Broken But Still Beautiful

This is a sad but true statement of our society's contempt for the one's who gave themselves for us. Dr Oz had women vets on his show the other day and my heart broke to see their plight. Many of the women vets become homeless too. I hope your words wake up lots of people to make a difference today, myself included.


thebluestar 5 years ago

This is such a sad fact of life. What has happened to respect and compassion. These wonderful men once gave their lives to their country unreservedly, and now we treat them like filth. Wash our hands and walk away. Why do we do his. We spend our country's resources supporting other countries when we can't give a home to an old warrior. Disgusting. Happy to share my thoughts.


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Hyphenbird , You and I are awakened to these things it is many ,many others , particularly those in leadership roles that forget. Thank you for coming by .


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Blue Star , thank you for caring Im sure you do ! We could all much better afford to take better ccare if we controled our government better.


b. Malin profile image

b. Malin 5 years ago

Wow, what a Wonderful, Truthful, Hub on this very Sad and Timely subject...Where, oh Where is the Hope for these Men and Women who served this Country so well, and are now lost in the cracks?


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

B Malin , Its going to take a army of voters to take back its power from corporate America, who now decides our soldiers missions. And a budget that includes more veteran care than special interest loans to wall street, A hand reaching out to our patriots.....Thank you for tolerating my rants.


SilverGenes 5 years ago

I wish there were no people on our streets, homeless and hungry, but to see so many veterans lost out there is a national shame. Your prophecy of filling their spots on the street with the young who are fighting today is chilling and most likely to come true unless we all clean up our act in how we treat each other. Well done.


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

SilverGenes , Nice to see you , All The thanks are due our vets , I know I go on about this but only the most resiliant of vets are able to deal with this without problems. I remember watching my Father and my brother when he came home from viet nam , and how they related Both vets of combat and with the same symptoms of stress related personalities. Is the answer as unatainable as "no more wars" , or is it the most disturbing of all , are we just uncaring of one another. Thank you for caring and sharing SilverGenes.


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 5 years ago from TEXAS

Oh dear. How excruciatingly sad and what an accurate contrast between his plight and the average person's tendency to apathy about it. Well done.


Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 5 years ago from The Beautiful South

It shouldn't offend anyone, they should be doing something and dropping stuff off at GoodWill to sell so you get a tax cut don't cut it either. I happen to know that while illegal immigrants are getting the food stamps, free housing, medical and who knows what all they also get the most from non-profit organizations too (not having to prove anything and probably taking new Van loads of it to Mexico) that should be seeing it gets to our poor, freezing and hungry. This is one of the main reasons I cannot be proud of America, they are always ready to send off big checks every time another country has a tragedy but this has been our tragedy always and I just do not understand it. They help alcoholics and drug addicts, the very ones I would let go without since they are getting money somewhere, but an old woman who doesn't even know who she is...(I keep seeing that old lady with the sign around her neck sitting on the sidewalk that says "I will vote for you") someone just trying to make a point and it was made well with me, many will pay one day.


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Nellieanna , Thank you dear one, Apathy is of those who don't appreciate these men and women, Perhaps we are all a bit apathetic. We must tweek our society to care better for some of these deserving souls. :-}}}


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Jackie Lynnley , So true , I think we could do much better in America , We will have to change ourselves too . Take back control of our political leadership . Not that we cant afford to either , just that they who do control, misdirect our resourses. Keep your chin up my friend , we will persevere.:-}}}}


Pollyannalana profile image

Pollyannalana 5 years ago from US

Sorry...sometimes I just forget who I am today.


chspublish profile image

chspublish 5 years ago from Ireland

Your poem really touches the truth of such a sad plight for the one time soldiers of a nation. There is much to do to help.


Randy Behavior profile image

Randy Behavior 5 years ago from Near the Ocean

I am so guilty of trying not to look. Hiding from responsibility. Giving them food and blankets quickly but never stopping to hear their story. Afraid to hear their story.

Doug Turner Jr. wrote a piece on this subject as well. I think you would like it.


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

I never forget who you are Pollyannalana , You're special!:-}


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Chs Publish, I'm afraid soldiers are forgotten about everywhere. Caring is half the battle. :-]]]


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Randy Behavior , It's hard to know when its safe Everyone understands that too. Listening would be a real help alone. They are almost always willing to chat. be vigilant Randy.:-]


Norma Budden profile image

Norma Budden 5 years ago from Nunavut, Canada

This is certainly a true plight which many people find themselves in - and not only war veterans. There are many people who are homeless because of various circumstances and, yes, they are looked at with shame and ridicule. It's a tragedy.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago

Wow! What a thought provoking poem. I honor all veterans of foreign wars. Thank you for this sobering message.


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Norma Budden ,Thats very true and women too . I feel we as a society are dangerously close to being indifferent to those who suffer here on our own streets. Nice to "meet" you.:-]


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

James Watkins , good to see you and congratulations on the milemarkers in hubbing. We all need to sober up on our treatment of vets . Thanks for stopping by!


Paradise7 profile image

Paradise7 5 years ago from Upstate New York

You offended no one, you simply told the truth, in a most compelling way.


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Paradise , thank you ! For taking time to read and comment. Be well.;-}


daddysgirl 5 years ago

We all need stop and pay attension to this issue of homelessness. I will never forget helping a homeless guy one day Stacy and I gave him some money to help him get home and bought him some dry socks for his feet were wet from a recent rain storm. We sisters both agreed, " you never know when you are entertaining angels." This fellow was even willing to do some work work for a couple hours while he waited for his bus ride back to family in Ga. I have never regretted lending a small hand. Just wish we could do it more often. Never know, could be any of us tomorrow!! love and hugs


ahorseback profile image

ahorseback 5 years ago Author

Hey Sweety pie , how are you , miss and love ya oxoxoxoxoxox , We must end poverty in America or we are not worthy of freedom at all. Could very well have been an angel you helped, or just someone who will remember it forever. Love you bunches....

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