He squats in an empty shop doorway

(at seventeen stacked shelves, zero

hours, for a pittance)

Holding up this cardboard sign

(saw a recruiting ad on telly)

Listing his name

(got talking to some squaddies

giving leaflets out in town)

Former rank

(imagined having mates and money)

Serial number

(joined up, learned to march)

Where he served and when

(home on leave, never paid for a drink,

noticed girls noticing him)

Accepts loose change with

God Bless you for that”

(on his first patrol

the guy in front was vaporised)

And can still snap off a sharp salute

(bought speed off the Yanks,

got a taste for the poppy)

As he scans the rooftops opposite

With his unblinking thousand yard stare.





Kevin Patrick McCann
Illustration Nick Victor

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One Response to PTSD

    1. Superb

      Comment by Paul Burnell on 20 June, 2019 at 10:33 am

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