My Hat by Shelby Harmon

Those that know me well

Know that there’s a part of me that’s hidden away in a shell.

They know I’ll show up almost anywhere wearing a hat,

I’ve been doing it for the last 10 years if that.

After finishing high school I left for the Navy,

I was a fresh 18, shit, I was just a baby.

During basic training, we were given a cover,

It’s a form of a hat, the person wearing it next to you was your new sister or brother.

Once I graduated and made it to my ship,

My cover changed over time, you’d think I’d get a grip.

A cover, to a helmet, then a USS Preble cap,

I should’ve known something else would fall into my lap.

Sent overseas to the dust and the grim,

I strapped on my helmet and gazed past the brim.

I saw, heard and did things I’ll never forget,

Unfortunately most of them are filled with regret.

A camouflage helmet was something to be proud of,

However while wearing it, friends were put below ground instead of keeping them above.

The ringing in my ears, it all happened so fast,

The helmet on my head, helped keep me from the blast.

A helmet, a cover, a cap or a hat,

Whatever you want to call it, I’m here because of that.

PTSD I promise is no dream,

It’s filled with traumatizing memories of losing my team.
Honorable discharge and award for being brave,

Isn’t going to make me feel better or bring them back from the grave.

I know things like this happen, I knew there was a chance,

However sometimes I find myself living in a trance.

So if you see me in a hat, just know it’s not a fad,

It reminds me of the reason I’m here today, and for that I’m glad.

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