This Soldier

He didn’t know what to do —
another jobless young man
Uncle Sam scooped up.
Off to the latest war he went
to a small country far away
(he’d been well schooled on Communists).

He fought in various shithole countries
he’d never heard of before,
countries full of gooks
with foreign talk and ways.

In tour after tour wounded, fixed up
sent back to fight till unrepairable:
sent to the States,
medals covering his sunken chest.
Among civilians his anger grew.

He collected bottles all day,
slept in a tent under the trees.
The woods offered the closest thing to peace
(with only occasional whispers of Agent Orange).

Robert A. Davies has published in recent years largely online. He has been writing poems seriously since 1969. He has published Timber, Tracks in Oregon, Melons and Mendelssohn, and Bluff Hollow. He was co-editor of Mr. Cogito for about 20 years. He has recently appeared in Dissident Voice and Windfall He can be reached at: Read other articles by Robert A..