“For those who fight for it, life has a flavor the protected never know.”
– Inscription on the back of a flak jacket worn by a Marine machine-gunner on the demilitarized zone (DMZ), Republic of Vietnam, 1968.
Posted: February 26, 2018
BY TIM MURPHY-1986
I'm just a nameless silhouette; Nobody knows my face. Though many of you pray for me each day. The man you said you won’t forget, in the dark and distant place. I AM THE POW; I am a dead Marine; I am the wounded grunt they couldn’t find. BUT I'M LIVING STILL, and I am long dead and I am somewhere in between. I can’t believe that I was left behind. They killed me in and ambush, and they captured me alive, and I died when my huey crashed and burned. They over-ran my unit, but I managed to service, And they beat me and they whipped me, and they worked me till I dropped. To break my will, they made their best endeavor. When great despair had gripped me, still the torture never stopped. And they told me, We can keep you here forever. They told me that my parents died, that my kids were grown and gone; and my wife lost hope, and married my best friend. But there. A PRAYER I HOLD INSIDE THAT HELPS ME TO GO ON, That someone still remembers, and will bring me home again. I’M JUST A NAMELESS SILHOUETTE; NOBODY KNOWS MY FACE. Though many of you pray for me each day; The man you said you won’t forget in a dark and distant place.
I AM THE POW; I AM THE MIA.
Posted: May 17, 2017
"A Beautiful Poem"
He was getting old and paunchy
And his hair was falling fast,
And he sat around the Legion,
Telling stories of the past.
Of a war that he once fought in,
And the deeds that he had done,
In his exploits with his buddies;
They were heroes, every one.
And 'tho sometimes to his neighbors
His tales became a joke,
All his buddies listened quietly
For they knew where of he spoke.
But we'll hear his tales no longer,
For ol' Joe has passed away,
And the world's a little poorer,
For a Veteran died today.
He won't be mourned by many,
Just his children and his wife.
For he lived an ordinary,
Very quiet sort of life.
He held a job and raised a family,
Going quietly on his way;
And the world won't note his passing,
'Tho a Veteran died today.
When politicians leave this earth,
Their bodies lie in state,
While thousands note their passing,
And proclaim that they were great.
Papers tell of their life stories
From the time that they were young,
But the passing of a Veteran
Goes unnoticed, and unsung.
Is the greatest contribution
To the welfare of our land,
Some jerk who breaks his promise
And cons his fellow man?
Or the ordinary fellow
Who in times of war and strife,
Goes off to serve his country
And offers up his life?
The politician's stipend
And the style in which he lives,
Are often disproportionate,
To the service that he gives.
While the ordinary Veteran,
Who offered up his all,
Is paid off with a medal
And perhaps a pension, small.
It is not the politicians
With their compromise and ploys,
Who won for us the freedom
That our country now enjoys.
Should you find yourself in danger,
With your enemies at hand,
Would you really want some cop-out,
With his ever-waffling stand?
Or would you want a Veteran
His home, his country, his kin,
Just a common Veteran,
Who would fight until the end.
He was just a common Veteran,
And his ranks are growing thin,
But his presence should remind us
We may need his likes again.
For when countries are in conflict,
We find the Veteran's part,
Is to clean up all the troubles
That the politicians start.
If we cannot do him honour
While he's here to hear the praise,
Then at least let's give him homage
At the ending of his days.
Perhaps just a simple headline
In the paper that might say:
"OUR COUNTRY IS IN MOURNING,
A VETERAN DIED TODAY."
Posted: April 1, 2017
Great poem from a WWII Corpsman
Dear Field Med Instructor Teach Me
Teach me instructor-I need to know more!
Is being a Doc different since I'm now in the Corps?
Marine boot camp is over, next comes your class,
Vietnam will come quickly, please teach me fast!
Triage and cut-downs, chest wounds and such!
Teach me instructor, I must learn so much!
You say battle dressings will be my "best friend".
Tourniquets, hemostats ... and it all starts again.
Traches, amputations and, of course, CPR,
White phosphorous, AK wounds...
I'm with you so far.
Give me your wisdom!
Help me prepare!
For when the wounded start falling
YOU won't be there
My tour is long over.
Do you mind if I share
Some thoughts so the next Doc
Is better prepared?
Teach me the Marine bleeding
As I fight for his life!
Teach me instructor, when the fighting is done,
To ignore that the Corporal had a daughter and a son.
Or when the booby trap smoke clears
And the choppers called in,
That the Marine in the poncho
Is my very best friend!
You taught me to save lives,
But it's not over yet...
Teach me, Instructor...
How to forget...