Covered in Red

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John Peters was just eight years old
When the argument with Russia had just turned Cold.
His father Dan just thirty four
When he was called to battle and went out the door.

“Johnny boy”, he heard his mom say,
“Papa will only be gone for a few days”
But knowledge far beyond his age,
Advised Johnny that war had been waged.

Sobs, screams, and smashes is all Johnny could hear
Under cans and bottles of his mothers beer
Until the realization of certain fear
Befell Johnny to his relative most dear.

Weeks upon weeks, with nothing but calls
As if he were trying to do all but stall
Insuring that there was no more than a scratch
Resulting from improper use of a match.

Two weeks went by then a note
That Dan had just boarded a boat
Sent straight to battle without a second
To call with love to his son.

All Johnny saw on the t.v. was pain
Of widows and children suffering of strain
And battles and conflict resulting in blood
And dead bodies lying in the mud.

Then as war intensified
So did his mother’s cry
“Oh Dan! Oh Dan! Please come out alive,
Without you I don’t know how to survive.”

Weeks turned to months without a note
Or a news report of the return of the boat
Until a time when there was no time at all
When the military gave my mother a call.



Courageous they called it
Although Johnny did not think of that one bit
A martyr for freedom they said
While others were too scared and fled.


To Johnny it wasn’t 42 dead
It was one, who was shot in the head
with the nametag Peters,
covered in red.

It took two weeks time of sorrow and dread
Until Johnny’s mother was found dead
Hanging two feet above her bead
Holding onto a letter which said

“Sorry I could not be there
There was too much pain to bear
As your face looks to much the same
As your father who never came”

War to some is just a game
But to Johnny it may just never be the same
History books may say 42 dead
but this does not count, the families covered in red.





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