Mark I. Kirkmeyer


We lay quietly near the air field
Semi-relaxed, M203 ready to wield
The island is safe, the fighting done
Final battle, last night was won

One wounded machine-gun crew
Asleep was a target before we knew
He flew to Texas on a C-9
After rehab he might be fine

Two honored bodies have flown
The Captain on patrol alone
A sergeant a souvenir to take
Both in bags ‘cause they made mistake

More aircraft settle to the runway
Bringing senior officers for the day
The ramp opens, heroes are made
They march as if on parade

To the end of the runway
In formation they stay
Up the ramp they go
Still in nice neat row

The aircraft engines roar
Allowing the officers to soar
About dehydrated meals we moan
The visitors are going home

Days later we return to base
This should be a happy place
After cleaning I head for the bar
Silently I realize who they are

The ones with the crowd
Telling a story so proud
They are entitle to the metal they wear
They had “gone over there”

They wear the campaign metal like me
They even get to wear the CIB[•]
For they were Infantry in the zone
They didn’t fight battle was done

My nose is out of joint
They need the promotion point
Someday they will wear a star
But it will be me with the scar.