In a hot sun, at Saigon center, in amazement there she stands,
among the bustling slant eyed natives, she with her clean, soft hands.
There is mayhem on the streets filled with cycles, trucks and jeeps.
Fumes and engine noise and jabbering people jammed in tight in heaps.
The knowing looks she gets, the calculating and blank-eyed stares,
from the soldiers, whores and vendors peddling their special wares.
In her Innocence, this Round Eyed Girl from Our America.

Outside the city, where it is cooler, quiet and oh so still,
this willing girl joins a med-team walk-in to a rural ville.
Blonde with green eyes and such a wide and wondrous smile.
Her needles and pills are tempered by a comforting and easy style.
At first, they shy away from her smooth and coaxing charms,
Until a child with infection clings to her tender and caring arms,
In her Element, this Round Eyed Darling from Our America.

Back in Saigon, past the streets and alleys she strides her way along,
She listens to the voices speak, floating in a rhythmic sing and song.
The hair she has, she wears in bangs, close above her eyes,
cropped up short, easy to manage, so very climate-wise.
Tanned now, in green fatigues she no longer feels quite out of place.
The ‘green’ is gone from this nurse who wears concern upon her face.
In her Prime, this Round Eyed Beauty from Our America.

The kids follow her all around, grabbing for her hand,
her attention and her smile are so highly in demand.
To everyone they say, "This my Round Eye Lady!"
"She Numba One! She save that little baby."
"She beau coups great! She no dinky dau."
"She stay and hold my hand, she no didi mau."
In her Own, this Round Eyed Duchess from Our America.

Sweat circles darken her uniform, a furnace sun in a loveless sky.
Thrown from the road, the convoy cat-calls catch her as they go by,
"Yo! Baay-yay-beee! I love you long-time, you love me too, okay?"
Her blush is something never seen, she just waves to them each day.
She sees through their brazen ways, knowing the fears they heed,
Because in the field more men will fall, more young men will bleed.
In her Apprehension, this Round Eyed Angel from Our America.

The clouds gather for the coming storm, the air is static tensed.
When the silent noise in the city breaks, at first it’s only sensed.
Then felt, the shrill whistle sounds of rockets plunging in a scream.
Whose impacts shatter everything, wood, stone and glass careen.
The shock wave knocks the wind from her and throws her to the street.
She hesitates not in the least, but gathers strength and rebounds to her feet.
In her Confidence, this Round Eyed Nightingale from Our America.

The cordite smell boils with the smoke, the fire tastes of burning flesh.
Carnage smells, urine and ammonia fear, the odors blend and mesh.
The sour taste behind the tongue, the gorge of death not quite complete,
is mixed with wood smoke and the wail of sirens and the feeling of defeat.
Amid the chaos she joins the frantic search, her duty sense grows bolder.
Casting through the rubble for the lost she finds a lost young soldier.
In her Confusion, this Round Eyed Grace from Our America.

His side she reaches, opens her kit and gauges his condition quick.
Not much hope, but to ease the pain she injects a morphine stick.
Beneath the building’s wreck he’s pinned, the drug brings on a haze.
She checks his pulse as he comes around, his eyes offer that familiar glaze.
"Damn Lady, you’re the first Round Eye that I’ve seen." he says to her and sighs.
She cradles him in her loving arms, life fades away and slowly the soldier dies.
In her Agony, this Round Eyed Vision from Our America.

More deaths to witness, her tour grinds on, a waltz of nightmare despair.
But her hope does not decay, nor is it lost from her steady nurse’s care.
She tends each one of them and all, each one a separate soul and universe.
Each one a story of a family far away, each one caught in this Asian curse.
A long time in the going, an age spent in a purgatory with further yet to come,
she endures and cures, is transformed, transfixed and finally exhausted numb.
In her Hell, this Round Eyed Sister of Our America.

Once home again, no honors gather, no banners grace her portal door.
And the only cat-calls on the street ring out, "You lousy Army Whore!"
Tears of shame and tears of hurt, a punished heart then stolen by a few.
Cigarettes in a daisy-chain, drinking hard now, to make the mind a stew.
Self-punishment in any form, the worse the better and top that off with doubt.
Sinking lower every day, through a pistol barrel seems the only way for her out.
In her Desperation, this Round Eyed Woman from Our America.

Her closest friends, the vets she knows, the ones who stayed in touch,
give this gallant woman inner strength, one known by those who saw as much.
On a special day, in a special way, they whisper to the gleaming Wall of granite black.
Then the names etched up there, three thousand score all told, begin to whisper back.
They say, "You always gave all of yourself and more, you never passed us by."
"So peace be your mantle earned and wear it well, our sweet Lady Round of Eye."
In her Solace now, this Round Eyed Lady from Our America.

~ Jungle Vet '95 ~

Copyright © 1995 by Robert W. Baird 1/1D, 1st Platoon, Team "West Orange"