OK Corral East: Brothers in the Nam

BROTHERS IN THE N AM

Sgt. Christopher and I are
in Khanh Hoi down by the docks
in the Blues Bar where the women
are brown and there is no Saigon Tea
making our nightly HIT — 'Hore Inspection Tour
watching the black digging night sights
soul sounds getting tight

the grunts in the corner raise undisturbed hell
the timid white MP has his freckles pale
as he walks past the high dude
in the doorway in his lavender jump-suit
to remind the mama-san quietly of curfew
he chokes on the weed smoke
he sees nothing his color here

and he fingers his army rosary his.
but this is not Cleveland or Chicago
he can't cringe any one here and our
gazes like brown punji stakes impale him

we have all killed something recently
we know who owns the night
and carry darkness with us.
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