Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner

by Randall Jarrell

From my mother's sleep I fell into the State,
And I hunched in its belly till my wet fur froze.
Six miles from earth, loosed from the dream of life,
I woke to black flak and the nightmare fighters.
When I died they washed me out of the turret with a hose.


Isis said...

When you're wounded and left on Afghanistan's plains,
And the women come out to cut up what remains,
Jest roll to your rifle and blow out your brains
An' go to your Gawd like a soldier.

~ Rudyard Kipling

The Moody Minstrel said...

Also known as Hamburger Helper under glass.

Arkonbey said...

That always gives me shivers.

Don Snabulus said...


Poets know it.


Hey, now look!


Me too.

In General,

I should also thank Info Geek, Swinebread, Arkonbey, Thepsilam, and other readers for their service towards my defense and safety for Veterans Day.

Pandabonium said...

Well, I thank all you vets for your service that you thought was for our defense and safety - even if it turned out to be for another purpose all together.

Dean Wormer said...

Great poem. Did you write it don?


Don Snabulus said...


I am positive that the folks I mentioned are all aware that the whims of civilian leadership were, are, and will be in evidence diverting the cause of defense to offensive ends. Nonetheless, a risk was taken and a service rendered and I feel gratitude towards them.


Nope. Randell Jarrell penned this piece and I first read it in college in the Norton Anthology of World Literature. It struck a nerve with me ever since.

Pandabonium said...

I think that's what I said. I would hope, however, that we would learn the lessons of the past.

Don Snabulus said...


I didn't write that well, but I was complimenting what you were saying.

ElTigrez said...

Just you and the plexiglas hamster ball - 7.62 and 20mm cannon are a bitch.