!-- saved from url=(0022)http://internet.e-mail --> Gerald Ney

 

Gerald Ney

 

Gerald was a 2nd Lieutenant aerial surveillance officer with the 172nd Military Intelligence Detachment, 173rd Airborne Brigade and served as the officer-in-charge of the unitís Imagery Interpretation Section; which processed aerial photos, infrared transparencies, and airborne radar imagery.  He flew numerous photo missions in Cessna Bird Dogs and Hueys and also had court martial duty during the last 10 months of his tour.  After Vietnam, he was stationed for two years at Ft. Carson, Colorado and left the Army as a captain.

 

The Inconsolable Child Within

 

Anything but the Silence!

Something may come out

And bite me.

Talk, yell, scream and shout!

Dance, dance, jump around, dance

and then run.

"Second star to the left,

And straight until morning"?...

Maybe not.

Just go anyplace quick,

Or no place fast, like

The Red Queen.

Am I at least where I was,

Or in the next county? CAN'T

Stand success.

Or so I think they say,

Or is it I say; because

I'm too scared...

So I built my own hell -

Carried it on my back,

And I hid,

Inside, like some terrified turtle,

To escape the freezing of

The winter...

A discontented forever

With never a Christmas,

In my life.

So I cry the forced wracked sob,

And will be consoled

By no one.

Till everyone is as miserable

As I feel in an eternal moment

In all time.

Call me irresponsible,

Call me dysfunctional too,

But you know...

If you fail to find my heart,

To help me heal forgiving;

Then I win...

The Russian Roulette grand prize,

For shattering us both and that's

Beyond sad.

 

3/8/99

 

The Haunted Dream

 

Silent wings through the night,

Stealing into our sleep with fright,

Freighted with terrible weight,

And memory of loss.

Bolt upright we awake.

The stuttering sounds inside still quake.

You hear the cries of those forsook,

And remember their loss.

Hands raised, arms outstretched.

You can't span time and space

To pull them up, take them in,

 And their loss is your loss.

"A thousand tears falling",

So wrote Yung Krall.

Their flow pursues us still,

Till forgiveness for failure

Is allowed to fill the loss.

 

4/23/97 

 

The Leaf Rider

 

Where now are chopper and rider?

Cartridge belt gold gleaming,

Sunshower spray glistening,

A circlet of rainbow

Below the blades sweeping;

Out over the wire leaping,

Like leaves before the tempest reeling,

The greening blades of the paddies mirroring,

Bathed in the tropic heat, yet

In their ruffled blue fields shivering;

With the winds of war forward,

And childhood past remembering,

Is gone, as fast as the wind furrows

In the green-blue carpet glistening,

At first burst banished by bullets and blood.

 

Whither the windhover,

Above tangled green gliding, soaring,

The riders' glance sees not seeing,

The hurricane, the land overturning,

Their metal steeds' clacking racket calling;

So on down to the great grass jumping,

To tree line on tree line charging,

And always some never more moving,

And some bodies for a time limping,

While many minds and hearts hurt worse than they;

Yet new faces old places ever filling,

Steady as the monsoon rain's drumming,

As regular as its arrival,

The long hot months into years fading,

Till they all were gone.

So say men over a shot and beer drinking,

No knights in armor shining,

Who once were lads in the summer grinning,

And did their job of fighting,

Someone else sometimes scathed becoming.

 

8/5/85

 

In Memory of Skip 

 

You always seemed a little older,

And it wasn't the two years

Time you had on us.

A maturity perhaps found

In learning to be

A husband;

While we were still

Half in half out,

Hobbitlike tweens,

More carefree

Than we knew and

Not quite responsible;

For all life ahead

Was an unknown path

Into the Wild,

With dangers we thought

We knew something of,

From class and training,

Barely beyond Toy Soldiers

Mustering, but tasked

To lead real men

With very real lives,

Both sturdy and fragile

Before the human storm,

To beard Death

At his own hearth

And bring them back

In one piece

After duty was done...

"Objective Secure, Sir!"

So we slipped and slid

On the red clay mud,

Benning's best batch.

And the wait-a-minute

Vines held us fast.

Looked good on the map!

And you took the BS

And messing around

With our minds

With quiet good humor,

steady calm patience

Through it all.

 

Vietnam... In Country!

 

Fourteen months, or was it

A lifetime later.

Amidst eighteen laboring

Air conditioners inside

The Cam Ranh Bay O-Club.

Talked of my R and R

To be, and yours just past,

With the wife you loved,

And how the combat forced

Changes within yourself

Made necessary

Painful reintroduction

To whom you had become.

Hawaii would wait

Till you knew each other

Again.  Then back it was

to jungle, NVA and battle.

I promised I'd write

On return from R and R,

and I actually did,

But never was there reply,

And in three months,

Came time to go home.

On the hot dusty runway,

With duffel and my thoughts,

Boarding beginning...

The company jeep comes,

Flying up to the plane.

A waved tan envelope

In the clerk's hand.

"We regret to inform you..."

 

3/8/99

 

Poets Pages