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According to the song's authors, Tommy Boyce and Bobby Hart, the song is their protest of the Vietnam War and tells the story of a young man who has been drafted. He is waiting for the train that will take him to an army base, and he knows he may die in Vietnam. At the end of the song he states, "I don't know if I'm ever coming home." Like many early Monkees songs, Micky Dolenz is the only member of the group to actually appear on the record, though later Monkees recordings would feature more "true" group input. .
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