Red Cross

  donut dollie

Red Cross

for not remembering your name

i know it is here somewhere on the West Wall
probably around panel 20

i remember your face, your smile
as you showed me the picture of your wife and new baby

i remember how they teased the new papasan
as you danced around that desolate firebase laughing

i remember walking into ICU
as they unwrapped the gory stump that was your leg

and i remember my sorrow when the nurse whispered,

"expectant - he was already in a body bag
when the medic noticed slight breathing"

for not staying

i wanted to hold your hand and tell you
to hang in there for your wife and new baby

but the nurses and doctors surrounded you
trying to keep you alive

and i would have only been in the way
so i told the nurse i would check on you later

for not returning

i just did not want to know
that another wife would receive that knock on the door
confirming her worst fears

i couldn't bear to know that another child
would grow up having never known his Father

for i had an early take off the next morning
to fly to another desolate firebase
to laugh and dance with other soldiers
before they too were killed


© 1989

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My Vietnam Related Websites:
button Women in Vietnam ~ Read about ALL the women who served . . .
button Dusty's Home Page ~ Poetry and prose by a woman who was a nurse in Vietnam
The Irish on the Wall ~ An effort to locate the Irish who died in Vietnam
button Tim O'Brien's Home Page ~ National Book Award Winner and Americal Vet

button Emily's Poetry ~ By a Red Cross Donut Dolly
button Shrapnel in the Heart ~ The most moving book you will read on Vietnam
button All About Vietnam    ~ An annotated bibliography of books about Vietnam for sale thru Amazon Worldwide!
button Battle Dressing ~ The Journey of a Nurse in Vietnam
button Project Hearts and Minds ~ Help put Viet Nam back together
button Photos from a Holts' Military History Tour ~ My trip to Vietnam, February 1998

My Other Websites:
Maybe Later . . . ~ My Creative Nonfiction
Irish in Korea ~ Irish men and women who gave their lives in the Korean War
Literature of the Korean War ~ Don't let the literature be forgotten
Samuel Pepys ~ One of my favorite authors
Chicago Theatre Z - A ~ This is the best theater town in the country!
Soccer Literature ~ I'm a fan and I read
O'Leary Lantern ~ Fire! Fire! Fire!
Gil Thorp ~ THE Coach (apologies to The General!)
Poetry of the First World War ~ Owen, Hardy and others
Chi-COW-go ~ Cowz plus Commentary (this used to be a cow town)
Graham Fulton, Scottish Poet ~ Charles Manson Auditions for the Monkees

Other Important Websites:
The Truth About Caroline ~ a  really good Young Adult book by my niece, Stacey M. Lane Grosh
Remember Oklahoma City ~  The
Civil Service and Military will NEVER forget!

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Page last updated August 17, 2004