I am now on the boat back to the States. It has barely been a few months since I was in another boat headed in the opposite direction, but it seems like forever. I find some amusement (the only amusement, in fact) in reading my entries in this journal. How could I know what was to happen? I was just a boy when I left. Now the wounds on my body as well as those in my mind are constant reminders of my rude awakening. All I know now is that I am changed forever. I don't know how the war is doing now, and quite frankly I don't care anymore. The army has brought me nothing but a chance at a quicker death; there is nothing that I owe it now. It still shocks me what supposedly 'civilized' people would do to each other on the field of battle. I had no idea where I was headed when I stepped off this boat so few weeks ago. I still get dreams at night that I'm still running through the battlefield, just running and running as fast as I can until I don't see anyone around me and I still keep on running. I see the mangled bodies of my fellow soldiers everywhere. Eventually the shell hits me; even when I know that it's coming I can't get away from it. I wake up screaming and bathed in sweat. The people around here are so used to crazy people coming back from the war that it doesn't scare them.
Sleep is of no comfort anymore. Instead, I sit around on the deck staring at the sea.

from Diary of a Soldier

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