The fact that repeated deployments are killing our military is nothing new, but it hit home for a few of us last week. Like many urban twentysomethings with privileged upbringings, this war has demanded next to nothing from my peer group — if it had, we might not have such a flaccid anti-war movement among us.
Not knowing anyone who had served on the ground, I and many others found gripping, chilling accounts of daily life as a soldier in Iraq reading Colby Buzzell’s blog My War, one of the best and most widely read blogs coming out of Iraq.
Buzzel is being redeployed for a second tour in Iraq three years after leaving the army. He mused about his possible obituary in a heartbreaking op-ed in the San Francisco chronicle last week, which inspired this week’s song The Second Time Around.
The Second Time Around
Write the info on the luggage tags
Loop the elastic through the handle on the bag
They say it ain’t that bad, it ain’t a folded flag
If that counts for something
400 some-odd days behind, they might not be over
The flipping calendar in mind, July through October
It’s an awful lot of time, does that count for something?
And some might say that they signed up for that
When they wrote their names on down
And it’s bad enough to readjust to the silence in this town
They’ll keep jumping up the ante, in for a penny, in for a pound
The bombs get louder the second time around
400 some-odd days ahead, so much for high hopes
There’s things they’d rather do instead, they’re stretched like a tightrope
They say they planned ahead, but you know and I know
No one signed up for that when they wrote their names on down
And it’s bad enough to readjust to the silence back in this town
They’ll up the ante, in for a penny, in for a pound
The war gets slower the second time around
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