Gary Jacobson

VALENTINE’S DAY IN A FOXHOLE

It’s Valentine’s Day for a grunt…
No different than any other day, dusky Cong to hunt
Or hunted by wily Cong.
What could go wrong?
For lost Boy Scouts, just waiting for men coming to kill us
Grunts… pawns, we’re just government surplus.
The devil’s rolling fated dice to see who wins… who dies
Who wins the big prize
A free lottery ticket home on a big silver bird
Your life hangs in the balance absurd.

Weary from a long hot day walking Vietnam’s park…
Pick a good spot for a foxhole in hot ’n’ humid dank dark
So tired after a day of humping the boonies
Dig a pit on the perimeter of defense with combat cronies
Sweat runs down your brow as you set up claymores and trips.
Chow down on yummy C-ration crackers and dips…
Lost in war’s fantastic imagery surreal
Watching… guarding… till dreaming becomes real
Carried home in the gentle-grim night lonely
All around, just guys doing warrior things only.

Valentine day’s no different as I try to forget why I’m blue
Except, I don’t have to pretend I’m not thinking of you
Crack jokes with another brother here by duty bound
Lean back in the fighting hole frighteningly profound
Listen to the sound of stark horror hovering round…
Listen tight for rounds inbound
Ignore deathly fears prickling your skin
Deadly fears abound where killing’s no sin
Wagering your life… for theirs.
Who out there really cares?

Short time veterans no longer despair
Of danger hanging so thick you can taste it in air
Grown so used to terror, till terrors become old.
Fear always abides with franks ’n’ beans for warrior’s bold,
So it really don’t mean nuthin…
You keep repeating as you try humanity to hold within
Knowing full well what’s lost…
And what’s won in the tempest tossed
For just a plain and ordinary man
Fighting the cunning Cong in Vietnam.

Flashing in that sweet tender moment
I see fiery excitement
Realizing the burning reality of what I’ve got
And what I’ve not…
Humping the verdant green under buttermilk skies
In every waking instant I see your green eyes
Staring at me your smoldering lips surprise
Hovering in sweet-and-sour air longingly
Beckoning me from far across the heartbreak sea
Where in my heart you wait impatiently for me.

It’s Valentine’s Day…
That very special day…
Another day I can’t stop thinking about you
Oh my girl I adore, with cheeks a red rosy hue.
“I adore you! I miss you… I need you… I want you.”
But I’ve this war business to deal with first
Combat duty in a land by the Devil accursed.
I’ve borne witness to sights savagely obscene
Where all around profane horrors abominably scream
Killing, the order of this jungle day in verdant green.

This lonely soldier boy dreams of his one true love
His supernal angel at home, sent from heavens above
Mid hating, killing…
Desperate angst eating at a fearful soul
Rising above this awful war’s fetid foxhole
A shallow breath away from grotesque death
Swarthy men coming, my extinction on angered breath.
I’m thankful no one sees the foolish tear I cried
For I must stand with lofty soldier’s pride
I must go on, this devilish fray abide
Stalking enemy boys just like me, from the other side.

It’s Valentine’s Day;
The season of purest love in brightest array
In a land where people may die today.
I wonder – can a valentine’s token love the killing orgy allay
Vapid war suddenly to relent?
Can love fade contentious hate omnipresent
Can love give mankind’s virulent contentions
Bring new resolutions
Can love arm the very darkness with shining light
To guide peace through darkest night?

I dream sweetest dreams of thy lingering kiss,
Oh what tender bliss
Beating staccato rhythms within my breast
With fiery ardor the very best
I promise, if I make it home from this lair of the Cong
It’s only because thoughts of you make me strong.
You stand beside me now, though far away
To instill bravery in me every day in this heated fray
Dwelling inside me, I make history
For love’s the bastion of freedom’s brave story.

On Valentine’s Day, come what may
War’s bestiality lying more real every day.
I feel lost without you;
Blythe spirits making me lonely and blue
Charming me while talking, walking, digging…
While stalking the foe to engage in battles fighting
My dearest companion the corkscrew jungle humping.
You light the fire of sweet desire to inspire.
I remember your last fond embrace
Forlorn, envisioning thy winsome face.

Oh, how long will be gruesome fated night…
Set upon by war’s heinous plight
That sent this gentle boy-next-door to fight
To a place where men bear in mind thoughts unkind
Fears tightly wound around my throat bind
My very love of life to still
Through long lonesome hours bestial men come to kill.
Brave lives will forever nourish this bloody hill
I’m already sweating still…
Thinking of you. How greatly I miss you.

While digging my foxhole I silently pray
Every night… every day
Prayerfully longing to be BACK in your arms divine ecstasy
To once again be blessed to be
Beside a girl-next-door with loving charms so heavenly.
how can I keep from singing
through silent tears I’m crying
Through long sweltering nights my being ream
With longing for my valentine, soft as a light’s beam
Your visage does in my mind careen.

Oh, it’s Valentine’s Day, midst feral savage war
That grotesquely disparate ogre the devil holds in store
Giving to America eternal heartache in grief esoterica
Boys come riding great birds of steel
Paying homage to war’s grim political creature’s surreal
Brush aside painfully taught value systems
For men fight… to die… to wield hatred’s sword
Sent as a blood stained bolt from their vassal lord
Bondsmen to do their feudal master’s bidding
Warriors to win his way, today his foe’s blood shedding.

It’s Valentine’s Day,
Yet death will not this day delay…
I long to lie beside thee in paradisiacal peace
Wishing in my heart this warring may cease
Modern man will embrace silences
Before the world’s differences
Before peaceful flowers may grow
Mankind must learn seeds of God’s love to neighbors sow
So songbirds may sing sweetly, softly so…

Yet if I should die…
The ultimate cost of war buy
In the quest for freedom, lay my body down
My frail life give for the victor’s crown
Give final brave breath for liberty
Valiantly in this fight for democracy…
Do not for me mourn
For the life within me shorn…
Know this, that I will forever love you…
Simply love you!