Let's get this straight right from the start
Matters like this are close to my heart
so don't call me up in the middle of the night
I sleep soundly now but I haven't always
and sleeping bears don't take kindly to dark hallways
So remember that when you're opening up doors
and flipping on lights that haven't been on before.

I saw a lot of things and no matter what you ask
I'm not going to answer
I don't have to answer.
I'll answer when and if I even have an answer.

Yes, you're welcome for my service
and sometimes it is nice to hear it
but sometimes I don't want to be reminded of the things I used to fear- if
you just stop to think about it this way-
Do you thank every teacher that taught your kid math?
Do you thank every butcher for the hamburger?
If you see me out wearing my patches,
come shake my hand,
come offer congratulations
come offer words of wisdom if you have 'em
But if I am out walking my dog
or swinging my son
from the monkey bars at the park
don't feel like you need to embark
in some awkward conversation.

Did you know me before I went to the desert?
Then it is okay to ask me how my mother's heart is.
Did you see the last Brewers' game?
We can talk about the score.
We can talk about the weather
I'm more than happy to pleasure
your small talk about local politics
and what you'll be wearing in the time of treats and tricks
But what I did over there
is not up for discussion.
That's not on the table
and I'm not able
to convey all the feelings I have about it.

No, I'm not angry
No, I'm not a victim of PTSD
But don't blame me for not wanting to talk about God
when I haven't seen him in a long time
don't hold it against me
when I don't want to chit-chat about the technicalities
of the fatalities
That you saw Anderson Cooper report
while sitting in your lounge chair
sipping on a night cap.

So thank you for the thank yous
but no thank you.

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