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Breaking Through (2005)

A Soldier's Song

04:03
Michael Barnes
0000-00-00

Story

I wrote this song after watching the Band of Brothers series around 2003 (my friend had let me borrow the DVDs).  The episode "Bastogne" in particular was incredibly visceral, and it inspired me to start writing A Soldier's Song.  The 2004 US presidential election was also right around the corner, and I was very opposed to George W. Bush being in office another 4 years.  I knew there'd just be more war with him as our president, so I put my feelings on that into the lyrics as well--hoping to use the song as a sort of an anti-war anthem.  

This was also the first song I'd written for the "Michael Barnes" project, and the first song where I sang many of the lyrics instead of whispered.

Lyrics

Why do we fight these foolish wars?

Deployed by men as human as I

How can we kill ourselves?

And feel like we did something right?

What gave us strength to pull the trigger?

Allowed us to care about who is bigger?

Who enabled all this pain?

What is this lesson?  To suppress our aggression?

 

Then what about the anger?

Why was that created?

Just to have eachother fighting 'till we've been eradicated?

 

If only we'd come together and let go of our flags

But we don't care until it's us wearing the dog tags

 

Gripping death in my hands I pray for forgiveness

Hoping that whatever God left long ago would come back

I turn my head and see my brothers in ruin

But what I really see is fate because it'll happen to me soon

 

Why should I have to pay for what that bastard devised?

I won't kill a man in any battle you've organized

Land of the free, or so they said long ago

I guess that's why they send a draft

'Cause we're free, ya know?

 

Boys become men overnight in fear

Landing in an area they know nothing about

Taught to kill, and forced to hate

To be a machine and let go of all the feeling

 

Shoot the guys who're told to be bad

Laugh and cheer when your task is done

Look at the body and take all he has

But don't realize, he's just as human as you

A father's son

 

How is this man's life more important than mine

For me to fall in his hands, pulled away from my sanctuary?

Face in the mud, eyes aimed through an ironsight

All I can do is forget about home because I'm here to die

 

I look up at the sky and see parachutes glide

My thoughts shut down, fear takes over, running for cover

The smoke of explosives contaminates the air

There's nothing I can do but play along in this affair

 

Everywhere I turn is a firefight

They will close around me

Here comes the end of my life

I hide in a corner and pray I'm found soon

By a friend of my country that I never paid attention to

 

How is this man's life more important than mine

For me to fall in his hands, pulled away from my sanctuary?

Face in the mud, eyes aimed through an ironsight

All I can do is forget about home because I'm here to die

 

(I'm here to die

Why must we destroy ourselves for old white men

Who don't even care?)

 

Michael Barnes © 2003

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