The VA Pharmacy by Emmy Lu Daly

“Now serving #156 at Station #3.”
One by one, on and on.
Dumbed and numbed
Veterans all.

WW II, Korea, Vietnam,
distant wars now.
WW II – the “good” war
Korea – the “forgotten war
Vietnam – the “Wasted” war.

#156 slowly raises his head,
pushes his wheel chair,
his one leg plaid panted,
belly hanging loosely.

One more trip to Station #3.
What’ll it be this time?
A pill for his cholesterol?
Maybe something for his COPD,
Or his “a-fib”?
How about a stronger pain pill for his arthritis?

Whatever. He’s supposed to be grateful,
lucky to get all this care and drugs.
So he takes the rx slip, smiles a little.
The young dispenser smiles back and says,
“Thank you for your service.”
They all say that.

#156 pivots his chair and mumbles,
“Oh, son, I hope you never know.”

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Have Faith by Emmy Lu Daly
Poet - Mary Clare Powell