Hell hath no fury like that
of a lifer retired without
having had to go to war

Especially when around
one-term enlistees who,
no fault of theirs, survived
their era's offshore war

Lifer wants desperately to
pull rank and out-macho
they whom he's certain
he's superior to although
they have what he lacks

Even worse are draftees
turned veterans when around
a two-decade Marine who
laments that Fate has
deprived him of wartime
service some might envy

Draftees and one-termers
serve then get out and on
with lives sidetracked by
do-or-die episodes that
mark them indelibly in just 
two years (four at most) of
service that Cheney dodged

Lifer who trained for years
for wars-missed continues
career devoted to training
for wars-coming in hopes of,
at long last, running Fate's
blood gauntlet. . .after which
survivor awakes shivering 
from dire deeds done well

*     *     *
Furious face