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Vietnam Quatrain

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Below is the poem entitled Vietnam Quatrain which was written by poet tom mcmurray. Please feel free to comment on this poem. However, please remember, PoetrySoup is a place of encouragement and growth.

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Vietnam Quatrain

Within my breast I carry ancient death; 
Its face is pale and white as marbled clay. 
Consumed with guilt, I struggle for each breath 
Still sour with napalm death of yesterday. 

The fractured colors formed behind my lids 
Are monumental rainbows round a pit 
Where hues of crimson-reds crisscross the grids 
Profuse in bloody lines and squares to fit. 

Profanely perfect patterned memories 
Of riddled bodies huddled on the ground, 
Where bloated skin slips off fatalities 
As ragged maggots slither-squirm around. 

The jungle flora breathes forth mystic sighs 
As soldiers wander through symbology. 
They see suspended phantoms' floating eyes; 
A catapult to horrid memory. 

No temple of communion colonnades! 
No transubstantiation in the heat! 
No priestly servants hidden in the glades! 
No promises of paradise wrapped neat! 

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  1. Date: 7/6/2015 3:03:00 PM
    Tom, you must be a Vietnam vet. You have captured the horror of that war precisely. Being a woman and Russian voice intercept op during that conflict, I wasn't there. I wrote a poem called "One Master" out of guilt for not serving along side my fellow soldiers in Vietnam. It is unsettling to read of a hell experienced first hand. You have brought the war to all of us. Deep, indeed. Jan

  1. Date: 7/23/2014 6:04:00 PM
    Immense, dark, and stunning; constructed extremely well. really a phenomenal poem.

  1. Date: 1/17/2013 8:48:00 AM
    My brother is a decorated disabled Navy Corpsman. My other brother and I have 56 years active and reserve time between us. I liked this one. It touches home.

  1. Date: 10/18/2012 8:57:00 PM
    Tom:-) congratulations with your wonderful win in the " February, 2012 Contest " It is very nice to see you on this winning list..*'.*'.*' hip hip hooray. Good night :-) always~ PD

  1. Date: 9/18/2012 8:44:00 AM
    Excellent work! Terry

  1. Date: 8/1/2012 8:10:00 PM
    Congratulations on your win in the PoetrySoup International Contest Tom. Love, Carol

  1. Date: 8/1/2012 3:36:00 PM
    ((()))Congrats on your winning work.Great job..Sara

  1. Date: 7/31/2012 3:22:00 AM
    Congratulations on your win in the International contest. hugs, Catie :)

  1. Date: 7/30/2012 6:31:00 PM
    Raw power, anger, hurt pain...and yet it seems unfinished to me..I think you have more to say..though a hard topic to read of a necessary one! Congrad's on your win. Light & Love

  1. Date: 7/30/2012 4:05:00 PM
    Wow, one of the really really good ones here I am seeing!! Excellent words chosen in this poem. Great alliteration and rhythm. Congrats on the HM. I love the topic too.

  1. Date: 7/29/2012 5:46:00 PM
    Congrats on your awesome win. love phyl

  1. Date: 7/29/2012 2:12:00 PM
    Congrats on your superb win,Tom.Well deserved!! Take Care,Arild

  1. Date: 7/29/2012 1:10:00 PM
    Tom, congratulations on your International win...David

  1. Date: 7/18/2012 8:13:00 AM
    Congratulations on your poem making it through round one of the PoetrySoup International Poetry Contest Tom. I wish you the best in the finals. Love, Carol