Tale of the infantry soldier

Fear is an experience he’s always known,
Despite nerves of steel and a heart of stone.
He trudges along for miles unknown
Through dirt and grime … often alone.

The chow is rot but it’s all he’s got.
Though the rifle and pack wear heavily on his back.
Mile after mile in wind and rain,
He’d pace along with much distain.
At journey's end he may lie down, to rest his head, alive or dead.

The infantry god is "The Queen of Battle,"
Which we all know to be nothing but prattle.
When engaging the wire
For close order strife,
With nothing more than his guts and knife,
The grunt may lose his life.

The Infantryman’s goal: "Close with and destroy the enemy'"
His obsession within.
At the end of the clash, with bodies mere hash,
He’ll sit down and cry,
For all the remains that lie.
But he soldiers on not knowing why,
Through fright and blood as his brothers’ die.

The leaders back home
Have punched his checks
As they remain back home
Protecting their necks.
William E. Lemanski
Tuxedo Park