Written 1996 by Sgt. Bob Wilson
Recon, 1st Bn 14th Infantry
The tiger’s growl greets the midnight watch inside of
as another darkened dirty hole hides these troopers on
Hypersomniac filled OD ponchos will miss the sentinels
and silently bless their god of war for granting this
Another night, another day, another numbing humping
into this jungle filled with death and memories called
American and Montagnard, common burdens to which
a single file beats endless time to the border just
The red clay earth that blankets all, and creeps into
a rusting paste of body paint, one more reward from
The trails filled with creeping scores of thin blood
drinking the life from passing soldiers and other
Stained burnt ocher combat packs filled with personal
Claymore bags filled with grenades and pouches of
Well taped metal combat gear, from which no sound
windproof lighters filled with fluid, cigarettes, and
fuel chunks of C4.
Green tracer rounds and whistle sounds announce the
to kill us all and keep this land, to honor freedoms
The bunker line erupts with fire directed towards our
as sergeants signal follow me, a race to form a flank.
Firepower, firepower, that awesome raptor of war,
a growing thunderous cacophony, eruptions great and
105s and 155s, screaming support from Plei Djerang,
while 82s and RPGs are the PAVNs communal refrain.
Above the roar fly birds of prey, fat hogs and fast
orchestrated air symphonies conducted by Bird Dog.
ARA, big bombs away, percussive waves and napalm
the power on call, lord of all, gives voice this
The enemy too holds cards today; their numbers are
they flank the right and then the left, a growing
Fire now from everywhere, the Troopers make their
within the center the wounded lie, waiting to be over
The day wears on with dry canteens and mouths like
Morphine Rangers work away so the bleeding can be
Leaders fall, the led step forth, each man takes
charge this day.
Everywhere, on both sides too are well-fought
The nineteenth of November now, nineteen and sixty
this year of the horse is ably fought between both foe
What men are these whom know the pain and yet respond
Golden Dragons, 1st of the 14th,
they answer duty’s call.