Thursday, January 30, 2014

Heroes

I am still reading “Thank You For Your Service”; an excruciatingly painful and hard book to read but I feel like I owe it to somebody to finish it. The stories are sad and what makes it even sadder is that there are bound to be hundreds more than the ones told in the book.



This morning (after a brief listen to some Led Zeppelin) I popped Guy Clark in the CD player. Not much better than good ole Texas music. Somewhere in the middle I heard this:

"Heroes" by Guy Clark

He brought the war home with him.
Still got sand in his boots.
He's wrestling with the demons and the cold hard truth.
And something ain't right about him.
He came back different.
Something in his eyes said he'd seen too much,
Something in his leg said he'd had enough.

Heroes, everybody needs heroes.
Even heroes need a little help.
Heroes can't always be heroes.
Who's gonna save the hero from himself?

He had a picture from Baghdad, with him and his buddies.
They're just horsin' around, gettin' ready.
One by one, he watched them die.
Just scared kids and he don't know why.
He's the only one to make it out alive.

Heroes, everybody needs heroes.
Even heroes need a little help.
Heroes can't always be heroes.
Who's gonna save the hero from himself?

Ten thousand clicks away in his head
He could smell the smoke, he could smell the dead
A silver star and a pistol in a drawer
Morphine just ain't working no more.

Heroes, everybody needs heroes.
Even heroes need a little help.
Heroes can't always be heroes.
Who's gonna save the hero from himself?

When I was a kid, we knew some folks and occasionally the phrase “shell-shocked” would be used to describe one of the men in my family’s circle of friends. The problems have newer names and initials but I guess as long as we send men and women to war, some of them are going to come back damaged beyond repair.




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