General Poetry posted May 26, 2021

This work has reached the exceptional level
From the Prom to Nam...

Honor Our Fallen Heroes

by Cedar

I thought life was great and just one big party,
  while dancing with my girl at our senior prom.
Little did I know that only a few months later,
      I would be in a war-torn country called Vietnam.

I volunteered to go wherever I was needed,
still a young teenager in nineteen sixty-five.
The reality of that decision came very soon,
I was now in a place trying hard to survive.

While out on patrol of the base perimeter,
our squad suddenly was under its first attack.
We were terrified and without any experience,
then the Sergeant yelled, "I've got your back."

Just those few words really lifted our spirits,
  from then on we used them over and over again.
"I've got your back" pulled us all closer together
and transformed several young boys into men.

Two days later we were ambushed in the jungle,
it was pouring rain and over a hundred degrees.
We were surrounded with no place to take cover
and many died from sniper fire high in the trees.

It took its toll on those who survived each battle,
some had breakdowns and couldn't stop crying.
It was hard to stay focused and keep on fighting,
while all around you, your buddies were dying.

Trembling with fear not knowing what to expect,
our weapon's ready, waiting for the next attack.
 The chances of returning home seemed hopeless,
so we all prayed together that God had our back.




I turned this story into a poem. As told to me by a good friend while we were stationed in the Philippine Islands in the mid-sixties. God did have the back of many in this dreadful war and many returned home. Some without certain body parts and some with mental problems the rest of their lives. Also, several committed suicide soon after being sent home and even still today.

The saying, "I've got your back" simply means that during a battle, under certain conditions, one soldier stands back to back with another protecting each other's back, not allowing anyone to be attacked from the rear. Thank you for reading...Bill
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