Old men of the VFW-

put down your mugs

and listen up.

I have a story, too.

It’s about the face

of a second lieutenant

I keep seeing in my dreams.

He staggers bareheaded

onto the road,

the road out there

in the rubber plantation.

He’s hold up

A No. 10 envelope

with the remains of one of your sons,

bone slivers

scraped with a bayonet

from the hull of the APC

he sent down Highway One.


He just keeps coming at me,

holding out someone’s soul

for the U.S. Mail,

his face a map

of all the roads we marched down,

one boot after the other

into all the trophy cases

of your goddamned VFW halls.


You tell me how it ends.

You got all the answers.



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