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I double, then triple
painkiller prescription.
Under my blankets
I float
a foot above my bed
my mind moves
out of the desert
and onto beaches with friends.


The sound of gunfire
The smell of blood
The shrapnel in my knee,
The ocean waves take me
away from it all
for a moment.


A friend is shot and dying.
Another has stepped on a mine
in front of me.
I'm squeezing onto the bloody leg
of one of my young soldiers.
And I am killing
the same little boy


They tell me I shouldn't abuse
my medications. They say
I drink too much and it's all
very unhealthy.


I wonder what they
really know about
very unhealthy.