"War is not healthy" the poster read
as it hung upon the wall,
"For children and other living things,"
this icon of the 70's,
symbolic of the songs we sing
as we march upon the street,
hoping that the peace we'd bring.
As students we remembered that
our friends were being shipped to fight;
victims of low GPA's or
lottery became their plight.
We read the names of high school friends
killed those days in Viet Nam
well aware it could be us,
we rose up on the campus lawn.
Across the room another sign
"Nuclear free zone"
this one read.
How obvious its message was
as daily we record our dead.
The war that lasted far too long,
"not war," they claimed, but "occupation."
We didn't know the difference then--
we stood with posters at our station.
The arm bands worn then
said it best,
we will not put our friends to rest!
Our voices heard,
they headed home
to country that rejected them
as if the choice was theirs alone
to plunder villages and folks...
No acceptance of the burden
that they carried as their yokes.
War is not healthy... !
we stood firm and
marched each night in steady stream...
Where is that girl who believed
but now no longer owns that dream?
Who wonders if this current war
will last beyond her daughter's term
who will be called upon for years,
duty bound, to again return?
Beautiful girl, beloved by all,
a princess in her parents' eyes,
upon the duty of the call
she must obey and then arise.
A daughter trained to protect, defend,
Does she, herself, awakened lie?
Why must she bear this burden now--
prepared to fight, perhaps to die?