By John Gulick


The rotors cut the air

With the rhythmical slap

Spinning overhead and up

Close their singing blades so

Sharp that we cringe always

When boarding for every ride.


Sometimes their sound is high

And muffled, far away

When they have a menace

All their own, their guns as

Deadly for me, as if

My eyes were dark, aslant.


Sometimes they are friendly

Angels of the air who

Take the wounded to their

Place of healing and the

Dead bagged up begin their

Journey home, no more pain to feel.


So too they roar above

The tree tops, raptors of

The sky whose talons are

Replaced by gunners with

Eyes ever searching for

A target that could be me.


Sometimes they act like buses,

Ferries bursting at the seams,

With boxes, beers and ammo.

At other times, grim cargo

That breathes with eyes so wide

And racing hearts speed to the zone.


And now my hair is white,

My shoulders stooped instead

Of Squared like before I rode

A chopper bound for fate

And when I hear one now, my

Mind reviews the frames in silence.



John Gulick

BUD/S Class 35 wc

August 1, 1995 9:20 a.m.

San Francisco, California


 Back to UDT/SEAL Vietnam Era stories