He holds a cardboard sign that says
he's homeless and needs funds.
He claims that he's a veteran
though he doesn't look like one.
The frontlines left him fragile
when at last he made it home.
The protest signs that greeted him
implied he was alone.
He married and had children,
but he couldn't keep a job.
His nightmares left him troubled
and his bosses found him odd.
In time he lost his marriage,
then his house and dignity.
And now this veteran pleads for help
from passersby like me.
Lord, guide me as I ponder
what to give and what to say
to encourage men who hold up signs
and beg on Veterans' Day.