When Trang Sup Burned
What is worse than the impotent rage
When one is trapped, unable to engage
The enemy when he slips in to kill?
You can only watch with furious eyes
As mortars explode and the agonized cries
Of the victims pierce your soul with a chill
That freezes memories that will never melt,
And bares a nerve that still is felt
In those unguarded moments when you're still.
Then the memories start along with the pain
As the smoke and the fire rekindle your brain
Making you live it once more against your will.
The children scream and the old folks weep
And you close your eyes trying to keep
Out the sights that bore in like a drill.
True anguish comes when the enemy has gone,
You're helping survivors, all bloodied and torn…
And, for you, war has forever lost its thrill.
©2/14/2004 Thurman P. Woodfork
Poetry and Stories of Warfare and Wisdom