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War Opinion Letter

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My Dearest Darling Evelyn,

I love you so much. More than you can ever even begin to fathom. The day we said our vows was the happiest day of my life. Second only to the day your letter came telling me about the birth of our beautiful daughter Isabella. Seven pounds, eight ounces. I remember. Aren’t you proud of me for remembering? Please be proud, darling. No one is proud of me here. No one is proud of anyone fighting this pointless, pointless war.

Today I saw my first death. It was Adam. Yes, Adam from down the street. Adam from church. Amelia’s husband, Adam. He’s gone, Evelyn. He’s never coming back. God, he was so full of confidence. He thought he was going to be the last one standing. We all believed him too. Why wouldn’t we? He was always so strong. Even on the worst of days, he could find a reason to smile. I’m gonna miss him so much. How will the rest of the platoon get by without him? Why should I even bother going on, Evelyn? If Adam couldn’t make it through this war, none of us will. It’s over for me, baby. I’d rather die on my own terms than be brutally murdered by an enemy who doesn’t even understand why we’re here.

You see sweetheart, they told us at home that if we went into this war, we would come out heroes. They didn’t tell us that we would watch our friends and neighbors be blown to bits by hateful, wicked weapons of unimaginable force. They didn’t tell us that we wouldn’t be able to go home for our mothers’ funerals. No one said that we would be killing innocent people just because they lived in the same barely-habitable village as someone who might be Vietcong. No one told me that mothers would hand me their children strapped with bombs. Think about the look on a child’s face in that instant before the bomb goes off. Think of the desperation of the civilians. It makes me sick to my stomach. I can’t do it anymore, Evelyn. I’m not fighting for America anymore. I’m fighting for my sanity. Darling I haven’t slept in weeks and weeks. The dreams I have aren’t nightmares. They’re night terrors. I wake up screaming, sometimes sobbing, drenched in sweat that I can’t wash away because there’s no lake to bathe in nearby. All of my terrors are soaked in my skin. Even if I could wash them off, where would they go?

And after all that, no one is proud of us. I got a letter from a friend who went on R&R for a few days. He said he got spit on at the airport. Someone threw food at him and yelled obscenities at him. What kind of country do we live in? What kind of world is this, honey? I’ve killed people. There are people who have died; there are families who are in mourning because of a gun that I fired. I went through that mental torture for my ignorant, selfish country. I hope they’re happy. This is the end for me. Tell Isabella that I love her, and I wish I could’ve gotten to meet her. Don’t tell her about the horrors of war. Don’t let her ever find out. Protect my little princess no matter what.

Most importantly, Evelyn, please don’t ever doubt that you are and always were the love of my life. I don’t want to put you through the mental anguish that I’ve gone through when I get home. There’s a condition called Post Traumatic Stress Disorder that would keep me from living a normal life after I got home. You have a brand new baby to take care of. You can’t be responsible for me too. I’ll be there looking down on you every single night. I’ll keep you and Bella out of harm’s way. But by the time you get this letter, it’ll be too late. The gun that my dad gave me on our first hunting trip is sitting right on my left. Remember? I had you send it to me because the ones that they gave us were so unreliable. America is also unreliable. But my dad’s gun was always there when I needed it. I love you darling, and I hope you and Isabella live a very happy and fulfilling life. I can’t wait to watch it from heaven.
All my love,
Michael




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This article has 172 comments. Post your own!

Karr505 said...
Nov. 18, 2011 at 10:57 pm:
WONDERFUL!! I loved every second of this! I've never read anything like this! I LOVE IT!!! :D
Keep it up!(:
 
PaRaNoRmAl627 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Jan. 4, 2012 at 2:51 pm :
karr505...thank you so much :) and to TheOpinion, i'm not quite sure who you think you are but your "opinion" should really be kept to yourself. Didn't your mommy ever tell you that if you have nothing nice to say you shouldnt say anything at all?
 
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matador said...
Nov. 15, 2011 at 8:39 pm:

AMAZING!! I loved your line "All of my terrors are soaked in my skin. Even if I could wash them off, where would they go?" I feel it shows Michaels true inner emotions, that's just me of course. 

this is an amazing piece of writing.

 
PaRaNoRmAl627 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Nov. 16, 2011 at 2:15 pm :
thanks so muchh! :)
 
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iluvrockandroll2 said...
Nov. 11, 2011 at 9:35 pm:
i feel like crying! well done!!
 
PaRaNoRmAl627 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Nov. 14, 2011 at 9:42 am :
i love inspiring all of this emotion :P i'm so glad you enjoyed it :D thanks for readingg!
 
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russianirishdancinggal43 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Oct. 1, 2011 at 10:05 am:
Amazing accuracy to what the soldiers really must have been feeling. I almost cried to say the least. I know I'll be thinking about this article for the rest of the day. I loved it.
 
PaRaNoRmAl627 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Oct. 1, 2011 at 3:00 pm :
aww thank you so muchh! its great to hear that it has an impact on people :)
 
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Mellifluous said...
Sept. 28, 2011 at 3:15 pm:
This is the most emotional and gut-wrenching piece I have read on this website in a long time, as well as being historically accurate. I don't usually cry from reading stories, but I came really close this time. Amazing job!!!!! 
 
PaRaNoRmAl627 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Sept. 28, 2011 at 9:15 pm :
hehe im flattered :) thank youu!
 
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tooswaggedout said...
Aug. 31, 2011 at 12:25 pm:
I liked this piece beacuse  it was very historicaaly accurate. The story was very touching because it was real. I enjoyed the way that is was written in form of a letter. I really felt like the Micheal (the main character) was writing to me...it felt so real.
 
PaRaNoRmAl627 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Aug. 31, 2011 at 5:40 pm :
glad you enjoyed itt! :) thanks for readingg!
 
Karr505 replied...
Nov. 18, 2011 at 10:58 pm :
I agree! It felt so real!
 
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CoffeeKat said...
Aug. 23, 2011 at 9:29 pm:

I'm not gonna lie. I cried while reading this because war really scares me, but this piece was beautiful and heart-wrenching. Mostly because this is true. This goes on every day. *sigh*

Congrats on a wonderful story. I really loved it, despite the dark themes, it was beautiful. =`) Cheers

 
PaRaNoRmAl627 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Aug. 23, 2011 at 9:55 pm :
war scares me too :/ it sucks that the world has to be like this but what can you do...well im glad you liked the piece :) thanks for readingg!
 
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rage_against_the_machine said...
Aug. 20, 2011 at 6:51 pm:
This was amazing. I really enjoy it, as I am very against war, and this really displays the emotional tearing it creates. Unique idea too, that he is committing suicide. Well-written.
 
PaRaNoRmAl627 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Aug. 20, 2011 at 6:52 pm :
yaay thank you so muchh! really glad you liked it :)
 
rage_against_the_machine replied...
Aug. 20, 2011 at 7:05 pm :
No problem :)  Did you comment mine yet?
 
PaRaNoRmAl627 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Aug. 20, 2011 at 7:19 pm :
just finished reading, ill comment on your page :)
 
rage_against_the_machine replied...
Aug. 20, 2011 at 7:24 pm :
thank youu!
 
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KayGee said...
Aug. 15, 2011 at 8:32 pm:
This is stunning and so emotional! You're a great writer.
 
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