What Was It Like Being 21?

327 Infantry Veterans

327th Infantry

What Was It Like Being 21?

by Douglas R. Bergman
© 2006

I remember the field of weeds out back
Dreams and dragons slayed each summer day
Is the sky still so tomorrow blue?
Are the dragons still green?
Did I ever learn how to love you?
I sang the horror of an off key clown
To the passion for a glass menagerie
And dreamed of the lights on old Broadway
Craving the noisy cheers I would surely earn
Ready to suffer for my art so gladly free

What was it like being 21?
My dreams died in a war never won.

She was the greatest actress I ever knew
A Blanche for eternity that almost died
And I drank away the marriage with anger
The confusion swirling whats wrong with me
The love of my life drowned in my bottle
My first three boys were to be Tom, Matty n’ Jimmy
Where the last three girls Genie, Alice and Betty Jo?
No rockets and rainbow futures
Or sunset lovers in Zanzibar
Trust and passion pushed away so far

What was it like being 21?
My dreams died in a war never won

I remember Toons the actress
Alone on an empty stage
We sailed a stormy sea
Of passion could she survive me
I missed our gray hair lovers history
Somewhere in the land of rainbows
Are they wine and cheese next years
Romping in the grass
With toothless queens and baseball teams
This old man never lived
Turning angry fifty at that tender twenty

What was it like being 21?
My dreams died in a war never won.

I don’t run anymore
The anger slows me down
Back to the corner
Do I dare trust her
So weary so many years
I see the light at the end
Through so many nightmare tears
Why did I waste all that youth
On fear and bullets that thrilled me so
Is it time to stop asking why
So few sunsets to waste about to cry

When will I be done
With a war never won
Was 21 ever any fun?

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