Proud to have served in the military.
A veteran, disabled by war,
victim of devious casualty;
Vietnam era timeframe,
proud to have served
despite ravages of
mishap, of lasting
……an eternity of time coiled into minutes,
North Dakota: a defective warehouse door
with a red tag, “Do Not Use”,
a roller wheel breaks...
An uncontrolled saboteur slides quickly
from forklift blades and
rages downward through freezing winds,
five hundred pounds seeking prey;
I am the victim of crushing chance,
meat for concrete jaws and metal teeth,
one swift bite of a heavy guillotine
striking, squeezing--lungs explode
like a punctured balloon, locked
in a vise at the edge of life.
Seconds become life spans,
pain is a tidal wave of fire
as vertebrae are compressed and fractured.
Some vicious marksman has taken aim
at a living target:
The beast is lifted,
I am removed. Shock, dizziness,
the flames devour me. Where is my air?
Summon all remaining energy for air,
struggle for life, to breathe,
(Don’t let the bastard win)
the entire universe is spinning wildly
I cry for a breath,
an ambulance en route,
minutes of forever,
spasms of flesh
like a night crawler pierced.
Still proud to have served.