Gary Jacobson

FERAL STALKING NIGHT

Night PatrolThe dank Le Hong Fong Forest screams
In savage tense dreams,
As pungent hatreds surround me,
Stalking me
Filling me
In dark feral night all around me
Eating at my soul…
With gentle horrors cajole
On this black moonless night
Of violent jungle fright.

This grave night brave hunters
Turned hunted.
All day infantry grunts grunted,
Innocently sweating “boys next door,”
Marching in duties grim chore,
Pushed by their Captain
Advancing to attain
The VC village domain.

Suddenly we’re here
Mid this fetid jungle of fear
Just a naive kid
Digging foxholes mid
The Vietcong Hilton
Expecting any minute bloodletting action
Bullets in anger to come flying,
Probing,
Through the jungle they tore,
Singing a song soldiers abhor,
Searching,
Great violence intending.

My brave heart an alien bullet sees
As it goes marauding
Stripping
Leaves from the trees.
For I’m lying
Shivering
Sweating in the moonlight
Of this dank killing field
Waiting for the night to yield
Its dark terrors chilling
All amazed that the killing
Can come with such ease.
Killing giving No more notice
Than a faint jungle breeze.

Where cold blood like water runs
Hearing only sounding guns
Parental lessons
Boys from next door must forget
In this war weary pit.
For in the killing fields
All honor yields.
Sons must kill to survive
Where killing
Begets killing,
Abiding hatreds thrive.

Angry bullets come slashing
In grim bittered gnashing
Flying from angry men,
Propelled through indignant din,
Into very hearts hiding
Into forsaken spent souls
Dug deep to eternity
In their fighting holes.

My star-spangled mortality,
Faces Charley’s darts of ferocity,
Preoccupied with my dying,
Thru jungles gauntlet slicing,
Sent to maim and to slay,
Cutting through me
Like a ribboned filet.

Bloody driblets silently gushing
Like a babbling brook blood spewing
Pouring from angry wounds slit
From a cong home boys hit
Speaking to a generation bled
Cruel war does embed,
On innocent senses shed,
Wars barbaric plight,
Till morning’s light leaks bright.

I hear the very night
Hear it erupt with clamoring fright
Hearing vile men around me shout
Swearing hatreds inside and without
Sweet and sour shivers coming,
Villainous shouts keep threatening…
To snatch very life…
My very life!

Riding tepid winds
A bullet invitation sends
To boys over here
From boys over there
A message of death flying
From silent souls crying
Slowly, silently, dying
A message unfolding viciously
Capriciously,
To join the life ending play
Dancing war’s blazing bullet ballet.

Horrible beasts of war come weaving
To boys with wounded souls grieving
Passing thru steaming jungle crevices,
Through tall elephant grasses,
Bathed with hateful dew venoms,
To “boy next door” phenoms.
All bravery fast fading;
In dim light straining
Through an army of prayers
Bearing sinister Nam’s gory tares.

Will anyone weep for me?
Will anyone hear this boyish fear sighing,
A brave man tears crying,
Over here slowly dying?
Dejected and forlorn,
Despairing of seeing blessed morn
Thinking of places left far behind
Where people were once kind,
A place “shortimers” herald,
A sweet home back in “The world.”

At long last
Comes prayed for morning,
At long last
Fears of night shedding.
At long last
Brave soldiers face the brave day,
Prepare to re-enter the fray.
Mankind’s freedoms to protect
Without luxury their battles to select
In this misunderstood brawl,
Ripping from them civility’s all.
Soldiers greet the newborn morning
Answering,
Shouting,
To rising sun dawning ironic,
With graveled voice sarcastic.
For all grimly recall
Buddies who gave all,
Dying in war’s unholy maelstrom…

Good Morning Vietnam?