Writings Of Boondockers Poetic Justice Members
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Site Awards
Lighter Side Of BPJ
Lighter Side #2
Lighter Side #3
LIGHTER SIDE#4
4TH OF JULY 2003
THE KOREAN WAR REMEMBERED /July 27,1953-July27,2003 50 years

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We Were Soldiers
by Gary Jacobson

We were soldiers enlisted to glory's gang
Carried on silken wings to the dreaded Ia Drang
This prized generation of youthful princes
Modern cavalrymen dropped in on war by steel horses
Stirring, whirring helicopters rhythmical cadences
Staccato beat pounding whomp-whomp-whomp
Echoing in old cavalrymen's ears, clomp-clomp-clomp.

Filling fearsome air with bristling beats pulsing
Out of ethereal mists hammering,
Hearts palpitating, throbbing, drumming
These carnivorous birds of prey high in the sky
Predacious like raptorial eagles they fly
Out of the recesses of the sky to earth plummeting
In one fell swoop, foundations of evil assaulting.

We were soldiers, inviolable hope of all creation
Future hope incarnate of our nation
America's boys truly the cream of the crop
Told of bullies who made very valor stop
Roaming relentlessly war's hating backdrop...
Brutalized...traumatized...
By deadened war cauterized.

We were soldiers invincible, of royal ancestry
Come bearing gifts to set a noble people free
With every nerve, fiber, sinew of bountiful being
Even with body counts ever higher careening.
Into the maw of Hell just went...where we were sent
To where evil minions bastions of freedom gnaws
Baring predatory talons we show an eagle's claws.

We were soldiers who in good faith believed
Lessons taught by goodly fathers received
Courageous spirits beyond glories conceived
Stalwart and bold, true-blue real men
Princes sent in disciplined dignity to Vietnam
Truly the apple of our nation's eye
Burned into our hearts duty, ours but to do or die.

We were soldiers led by battle tested warriors
Guided by spirits of valiant conquerors
Smiling in the face of war's terrible oppressors
Believing God Himself inspired our leaders
Divinity stood behind every tactical decision
To weed out the cankers by righteous precision
Guided by the Almighty to make surgical incision.

We were soldiers from the land of milk and honey
Called by God to defend freedom's democracy
With all glory to His name, to restore repressed liberty
To dispatch foul evils with boyish faith's bright certainty
Fighting hand-to-hand this great calling to magnify
To the death in elephant grasses of Albany eye-high.

We were soldiers invited by an impoverished nation
To restore their rights of self determination.
Boys fresh as a new born whelp
Come because God, country, Vietnam wanted our help
Bearing unexcelled bravery
In war's foofaraws boys aged too quickly
Men matured by the dying suddenly.

To the Ia Drang came men of the 1st Air Cavalry
Wearing black and yellow patches distinctively
With the black horse head silhouette
Destruction flying thick as dripping sweat
Dodging as in play, war's blazing bullet ballet
Jumped into a hot LZ
Explosively!

We were soldiers of a great nation
Boys led by veterans who earned honors adulation
From the South Pacific to battlefields European
To Korea's frozen Chosin
Now outnumbered 6-1 by fighting mad NVA
Life a fleeting thing tenuously at bay
Growing extinct in the jungle that day.

We were soldiers sent to the Ia Drang
Faith impregnable from which very freedom sprang
Rude death a constant familiar of serpent's fang
Boys fought for their lives as heavenly chorus sang
Earning hard their monthly $99.37 bill of fare
Flying into the heart of the enemies lair
Beaucoup fighting more than bargained for there.

We were soldiers driven hard by enemy all around...
Combatant blood brothers who the enemy surround
So I surmise, this profound thought to propound
Dinky dau war stinks!
Indeed in battle the very word love...shrinks
Death's common denominator, just us and the dinks
Dueling with enmity as knowing heaven winks.
We were soldiers just surviving to get back to "the world"
Who a Xin Loi attitude to enemies unfurled
Momentary peace only found by killing
Valiant foes who would end your life willing.
Yet transcendent love is ever abiding
Ties that eternally bind arise on the battlefields
Before this greater bond, all hatred yields.

War weary soldiers truly loved one another
Loved their fellows as a brother
Watched the backs of each other
Killed for each other
Lived for each other
Died for each other
Wept for each other!

Soldiers focus only on the man on his left hand
Just surviving with the man on his right hand
Doing battle with brutal northern barbarian
War tested Peoples Army of Vietnam...PAVN
Soldiers gone to hell and back for ideals American.
Ia Drang memories forever burn indelibly in our soul
Too many brave men heard their final liberty bells toll
Three hundred five Ia Drang soldiers answered the call
Now find eternal peace on a hallowed wall.
*****************

Combat
by Gary Jacobson

No matter how much training you've received
How much bravado adept with weapons of war believed
When you've never wall-to-wall fear perceived...
Combat is something you could never imagine
Not in your worst nightmare envision...

Nothing can prepare you for that!

War's a real attitude adjustment
Just knowing you can die at any moment
Knowing men out there plan precisely your death
Fear insatiable with every fetid breath...
Preoccupied with it
Dedicated to it...

Nothing can prepare you for that!

Before your eyes smatterings of life quickly deteriorate
Into a mushy mass life will your smoking gun obliterate.
It wears on you...
Indelibly changes you...
Forever awestruck in ways no surgeon can fix.
Lifelong horror...guilt buried deep in your soul transfix.

Nothing can prepare you for that...

When the country which sent its young princes off to war
Was not there to welcome home our soldiers anymore
Distressed soldiers bruised by it...
Bloodied and torn in body and spirit
Found Hope dashed from princely inheritance dispirited
Hope banned by prevailing establishment disinherited...

Nothing can prepare you for that!

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Eye of the Tiger
by Gary Jacobson ę 2003

I've the Eye of the Tiger
Without troublesome doubt of hindering scruples
Moving softly not to disturb careless wastrels
Tasting hot jungle wind burning in my nostrils
Stalking through eye-high savannah grasses
Hunting quiet as moonlight's gentle breezes
Tasting it for warm scent of the kill
For without second thought, this day...I will!

I've the Eye of the Tiger, swift and bold
To the archfiend my soul in torment sold
Taught as a tiger, a proficient killing machine's capacity
Trained as a tiger, to kill enemies with animal ferocity
Schooled adeptly as a carnivore in ways of war
Killing by fang and claw in ways those who sent me abhor
Versed to obliterate the foe without compunction
Pawn of "the man" my solitary function.

I've the Eye of the Tiger, that my God does send
Smell my aromatic stench roaming the wind
Without thought of him moving my way to contend
Laying booby traps just for him
This day will the devil welcome him
Slowly...surely...as a tiger dedicated to killing
Warm blood of my prey over me spilling
Cock an ear...
I smell his blood mixed with his fear...
My quarry death, looms very near.

I've the Eye of the Tiger
The most feared jungle killer.
When I move, nothing else does!
Or I add worlds of hurt to man's puny woes
For I'm the king of the jungle, make no mistake
My job, my enemies very life from him to take
To send him on his way to hell
And I do my job very, very well.

For I've the Eye of the Tiger,
That aggressive, audacious, fierce annihilator
Trained for this elite jungle task
Blending in with light and shadowed mask
An animal, scarce vestiges left of humanity
Predatory to enemies of liberty.
Killing unseen with cunning...calculating...coldness
Who at the snap of a twig...the twitch of an eye...the wrong sound
Displays innate viciousness.

I've the Eye of the Tiger
A voracious man-killer
Roaming the killing zone for death always hungry
Ranging over areas of operation on the edge of angry
Killing, a lethal obsession to the most powerful hunter alive
On murder and mayhem I with gusto thrive
Dispelling boyhood's sweetly na´ve innocence
Loving long ago replaced with hating vengeance.
Feasting now on blood and guts and glory
Damn my condemnatory memory...
Lying in dark shadow lurking there...
Waiting silently there...

With the eye of the tiger.
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In my younger days, I would have thought nothing of walking the distance between my house and the Pentagon. Before my dogs died, I used to walk them from my house to the Capitol. Now, after over twenty years of traveling the world in the name of freedom, it seems the menace has found its way to my own neighborhood. When I joined the Air Force nearly fifty years ago, an attack by such a faceless enemy was inconceivable.

MIND SHADOW

As the bright sunlight filters in through the window,
a familiar, distant thunder is heard; a jet circles in the
skies over Washington. Years ago, when I was a child,
planes flew directly over my house as they entered
the landing patterns for National Airport or Bolling Air
Force Base. They were a mild irritant because they
momentarily disrupted the TV reception as they made
their descent to earth.

Bolling long ago closed its runways and the flight
pattern for National has been changed. But this plane
isnt landing; it is circling high over the city on a
patrol, guarding against possible terrorist attacks.

Its far above my house, its engines a remote mutter,
yet it casts a shadow through the pattern of sunlight
shining through the trees and playing upon my living
room wall. It overlays the dancing leaves with an
invisible but tangible shadow of anger and fear.

Deadly explosions and sneaking attackers are things
that I thought I had left behind in another life in another
country. Yet, here they are again; they have followed
me home. And an old, long sublimated feeling returns,
vivid as ever: an impotent, banked, helpless rage. The
same anger I felt in the bunker down in Tay Ninh after I
returned to Trang Sup TDY.

I was waiting for a flight out, so I had no defensive
position to man. I just sat in the bunker with some others,
listening to and feeling the explosions erupting overhead
outside while someone else confronted the unseen enemy.

Dimly, I can hear children laughing outside as the sound
of the fighter fades into the distance. Remembered sounds
and odors recede; again, Im in a room bright with sunlight
instead of a darkened bunker.

The shadow dissolves back into leaves moving lazily in
the random breezes. The anger is slower in receding.

ęCopyright October 21, 2003 by Thurman P. Woodfork

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