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Below Pimples And Horn rimmed Glasses...A Hero.

Updated on October 14, 2009

Under Pimples

And Horn Rims .....A Hero




He was a scrawny kid
from Idaho somewhere or other
we never knew him
long enough to see past
the pimples and the horn rimmed
glasses he always wore.

He had just been shipped in-country
and was as green as the jungle.

He never got any letters
from girls but his mom was

a regular war correspondent.

He must of squeaked

through boot camp I suppose
a victim of the D.I.'s

constant verbal abuse
a poster child for the Marines he was not.

He was quiet and wrote

poetry of brave men
from histories pages,
and read and re-read them
editing his words as he
moved along each line.

He told me once

that he wanted to
teach when he got back
and I could just see
the teens eating

him for breakfast.

He was only with us two weeks
when we went out on a recon patrol,
it was strangely quiet that day
and we shoulda known.

He must have been a bit psychic
because he reacted so quickly.

We had stopped

to catch a breather
and fix our location
alongside an incredibly
dense part of the trail,
when he suddenly let out
a primal scream that
we never suspected he had in him,
and then he dove on an object
thrown into the midst of our squad.

It wound up cushioned precisely beneath
his breastbone as he had been taught,
and we heard a loud kerthump
and were bathed in crimson gore,
as he absorbed the blast of
a grenade tossed among us all.

Without hesitation, or doubt
he just went horizontal and saved
several other men from death and maiming.

His horn rimmed glasses were mangled
a few feet from his corpse
and his pimples would trouble him no more.

We reverently placed what was

left of him in a body bag
and sent him home to his loving mom,
saluting his remains as they
were secured for the journey.

He was a a true hero

in a sheepish fashion
but he left his mark in our souls,
that scrawny kid from Idaho
who chose to give his life
to save his brothers-in-arms
by cradling their deaths in his own.



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    • lmmartin profile image


      9 years ago from Alberta and Florida

      A wonderful eulogy to a real martyr. My father, a British soldier in WWII, told me that war brings out the best and the worst in a man, but he hoped my generation would never find that out. Unfortunately, his hopes were in vain. My husband is a Viet-Nam vet, my cousin's son is currently a mine-sweeper for the Canadian forces in Afghanistan, and I've come to understand the lunacy of war will go on. Thanks you for sharing this experience.


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