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1 But it always seemed to me that my father knew a lot,
2 Even though he went through most of the depression without a dime in his pocket,
3 And never did turn out to be a real big success,
4 Except that I loved him,
5 And wanted him to be proud of me,
6 Because I always thought that if he were proud of me,
7 I would really be something.
8 As it turned out, though, I must not have been something,
9 Because my sons never cared if I was proud of them,
10 And I guess maybe I never really was,
11 Since they always had it pretty easy,
12 And the first time things started to get tough,
13 aThey quit cold,
14 Just like that.

1 I grew up on a farm,
2 And we got up early,
3 And milked the bcows,
4 And I usually walked to school,
5 And all the other clichés everyone laughs at,
6 Because they're the things fathers say,
7 Or used to,
8 In my generation,
9 Which isn't that much of a coincidence,
10 Because it was mostly true,
11 And it's how we got all our wrong ideas,
12 Or at least that's how I think it happened.
13 You see,
14 And I know you're too young to remember this,
15 Your country used to be the country,
16 The land where you were born,
17 And spent most of your life on,
18 Without moving anywhere,
19 And so you loved it a lot,
20 Because your country was the hill where the sun came up,
21 Every day,
22 And the cwillow tree where Dad hung your swing,
23 And the dirt lanes where you rode your bike,
24 And the millpond where you fished for sunnies,
25 And the orchards that grew the dapples you ate in pies,
26 And the fields that grew the tomatoes you picked for dinner,
27 And you loved it,
28 More than anything,
29 Because that's where you came from,
30 And that's what fed you,
31 And entertained you,
32 And where they would bury you,
33 When the time came.

1 eMy father thought you should be willing to do anything at all for your country,
2 Because that's where you came from,
3 And where your family came from and your friends too,
4 And where all of you were going,
5 fWhen the time came.
6 And so I thought that too,
7 Which is probably where I went so wrong about America,
8 Because I was willing to kill all the Japanese in the world for my country,