Mark I. Kirkmeyer

WHAT COST FAILURE?

Knight of the sky loses his steed
Wind buffets him as he is thrown clear
Silk skirt opens capturing air
Hits the ground like a sack of potatoes

An aircraft has gone down
A pilot is alone in the sand
We have a new mission
Speeding to the rescue

No stop during the day
One man sleeps behind the mini-gun
The large weapons are manned
M2, Mark 19, and laser designator

Three dune buggies catch air
As they clear a ridge
Black glass marks the impact
Hide the vehicles

No beacon signal
Where is the knight?
There are his boot prints
There are tire tracks

Somebody beat us here
No friendly units in the area
Either enemy or Bedouin
My money is on enemy

We failed him
He’s been captured
He’s a POW
And it’s my fault

Never found out his name
Never shook his hand
Never welcomed him home
Did he make it home?

Reports said
They either came home
Or were confirmed dead
Should I believe?

New reports say
One got left behind
Could he be the one?
Should we have looked longer?

Submitted for the June 2002 IWVPA Club Theme Project, “Prisoner of War