Goodnight Saigon by Billy Joel
The song starts out with a piece of Syntax. "And we were sharp, as sharp as knives" gives you imagery. Shows how sharp they're senses are for being in Vietnam. How sharp they thought they were when they went into Vietnam. "They ruled the night, and the night" in this, shows that they ruled the night and every night in Vietnam. The U.S didn't know the land like the vietcong did.
"And we were sharp, as sharp as knives" Sharp is something pointy and can do damage to soft items. But he uses it as how sharp their senses are. "We came in spastic like tameless horses" He uses tameless horses like the men their were out of their minds. They weren't trained to fight against the vietcong in the thick jungles.
There is a lot of details in this song. "We came in spastic like tameless horses. We left in plastic as numbered corpses". This is showing how they went into Vietnam as young men, thinking they would defeat the vietcong. But most of them were killed and or wounded. "We held the day in the palm of our hand. They ruled the night, and the night" This shows how the U.S could fight during the day. But when it became night, the vietcong would ambush the U.S soldiers and kill a lot of them, then disappear into the night.
The tone of the song was annoyed but pleasant. The song and the lyrics makes it sound like they were happy to die with their brothers. They were angry about they were losing their friends but they had hope. They had each other and that is all that matter to the men in Vietnam.