Come on Lads, hurry up
soon there'll be no sun".
Yes, lads we were, boys in fact,
not yet twenty-one.

Your lucky lads, to have a chance
to fight for this great land,
just like your dads before you,
you'll come home a man.

Heroes, every one of you,
we won't let you down,
medals, glory, RSL
and freedom of the town".

So away we went to do our duty
just like our dads before,
we did our best, but could not win
this politicians' war.

This was a war without a front
no lines to go behind,
this was a war without any rules
with the blind leading the blind.

Where was this cunning enemy
who lived beneath the ground?
In the jungle? In the Village?
No, close and all around.

A war of nerves, but, mate hang on
its only just a year,
weapons, claymores, choppers-
why won't the wharfie's send our gear?

Where's the wire? Where's the ammo?
And the mail's delayed again,
are these same Australians
we came here to defend?

We're short of men; work twice as hard
to live another day
in this leech-infested jungle
where we sleep on the wet red clay.

The invisible enemy with his trip-wires
plays a waiting game,
he knows our pattern, watches us,
his traps will kill and maim.

Riots in the street back home,
"Murderers" we're branded,
"They're killing kids and using napalm"
each of us feels stranded.

We fought so hard to win the battles
but found there was no glory;
in your lounge room on the box
you were told a different story.

We count each day a blessing
now close to leaving here;
some of us won't make it
how things change in just a year.

Men we've grown to deeply care for
with whom we work, we trust, we fight,
soon we'll see no more of,
just shadows in the night.

On coming home we saw the crowd,
some of whom did Jeer,
emotions of pride, anger, rage were felt,
our reward for one lost year.

Yes lads we were, boys in fact,
and now well over twenty-one
some still battling with their thoughts,
others sleeping with a gun.



© robert kearney oam
c company & recce platoon vietnam 1st tour
Robert Kearney OAM