Boats are burning on the water,
reflecting the firelight of cities.
This is not the way it was,
though I’ve pretended to forget:
One uncle fighting in Korea,
sole survivor in his unit.
The other serving near Saigon
in the days before it all fell down.
Not knowing if November would come
and find us in our daily lives,
or October would mark the end
of us and our pretended genius.
Hiding under school desks,
as if they’d shield from radiation
gifted us by the horrid Russians.
MAD, the perfect final acronym.
They were the enemy.
We were the good guys.
Truth was something we knew.
And now we risk dying in one boat.