Once upon a time- chapter three

(Once upon a time
A Chapter by Coyote Poetry
Chapter three)


September 1975


Johnnie went to Abigail house in late September. He had spent three months at Fort Dix, New Jersey. He lost his unit in Vietnam after he re-enlisted for the second tour. He was connected to a reserve unit from Texas. He was sent to Fort Dix. It was a good thing. He spent three months in New York city with a kind woman. She helped him heal, he saw the pain caused by war. Made him think of what he had does to his family. The Texas unit was kind to him. Promoted him before he departed them.


He went to his grandparent house after arriving in Detroit. His grandfather was so happy he returned home, safe and sound. The complete family went to the Italian restaurant. His Grandfather and grandmother. Had faces of joy. He remembered his dear grandmother words she spoke that day. “We lost many to the old war honey. I am so glad you are alive. Please baby, forget the war and return to us.”


Abigail’s father asked him to come in and he made them some eggs and bacon. While the toasts was cooking in the toaster. He told him. I went to the Korea war at eighteen like you did for the Vietnam war. I was a 11-bang, bang. I killed and I killed. I do remember in bad dreams. Shooting my M-60 for 8 hours. I burned out three barrels. Thousand China soldiers laid dead and rotten in front of me. I had no chose. I was drafted. He looked at him and he went to him. Touched his shoulder. He told him. Abigail’s mother saved me. She held me for five days in 1954. She wouldn’t release me. I know today, I was saved by love. We ate the bacon and eggs with a deep silence.


Abigail’s father was very kind. They played chess for hours. He was always kind to him. His family was very poor and he ensure he had enough to live. He asked him. Remember when you met Abigail. First day of school and she was so scared. I remember you. Alone and fearless. You walked-up to Abigail who was crying and you told her. It is okay. I will be your friend. You took her hand and she quit crying. I still remember how I was thankful for the brave boy. All of us need a place to feel safe and a friend. You know, my home is your home. I am very proud of you. Are you going to call Abigail at Eastern?


He called Abigail. They talked for hours. He hung the phone-up and returned to the chess game. The father asked. Do you want me to drive you to Eastern Michigan? He looked at the father. Thank you Robert for your kindness and your friendship. I cannot add to Abigail burden. I must save myself. I am leaving for Germany in one week. All I would do is make her sad and she would worry for me. I will write her a letter. Robert looked sad and he told him. This is your decision, a bad decision. You will break Abigail’s heart.
Dear Abigail

My love, my angel. I never forgot you. I will return in three-year. You will be a nurse and I do not want to interrupt your education. I am heavy with burden. You were right. War is shit, war teaches us nothing but pain, misery and blood. I will write you from Germany and maybe one day. You and I. Can drink coffee, walk the circle at Lake St. Clair. You are my only sweet dream I have known. I need time to heal and forget what I had done. Please forgive me for running from you. You do not need the weight of a confused man near. I love you dear Abigail, I love you, always and forever.



He gave the letter to him and he requested Abigail address at Eastern. They said little for three hours while playing many games of chess. Six beers later and some whiskey. Robert told him. I respect your decision. You are being the brave boy again. You don’t want to make Abigail suffer. You want her to succeed and I understand your decision. Remember if you need anything. Please ask for it.


He didn’t know he would never see Abigail’s father again. He would died two years later. A heart attack. He regretted he didn’t stay longer with the kind man.


Dancing Coyote