Squad radio D.O.A, our unit maneuvers into position—digging the left flank. Sandbags, Sarin-gassing; flesh of women and children burst shielding salvos. “We’re outnumbered, Sarge!” Hellfire overrunning our battalion. “Retreat!” Full-scale mortar rounds; Nighthawks laying bombs. As I suffocate under sand, readying to pull that goddamn ring-pin when deafening alarm blare delivers me from self-destruction.
___________________________________________________ Care to hear me read these 55 Words?
The Above Flash55 was written for One Stop Poetry’s Sunday Picture Prompt Challenge. Rose Frei took the beautiful photo. She is the interviewee today (courtesy of Chris G.) over at One Stop Poetry. Check it out!
when i read the title, i was expecting something light-hearted and smoothly rippled like the sand on the picture and was just a bit overwhelmed to be right in the middle of a war scene…excellently done adam
nice…here is was reading a bunch about nomads and i am dropped into a rambo film…smiles. nicely played and i am glad you turned the gem a bit capturing a different aspect….and an action flick at that…smiles.
I can close my eyes, I can see the field of battle, I can feel the sweat and heat, and I can hear the whine of flesh, shells, and the thumps of mortars. I also hear the silence in my breath, as I squeeze the trigger. Alpha Delta – Delta Bravo says Bravo Zulu! Out
dreams like this are a reality for so many who can’t put their experiences behind them – my son is struggling to readjust to peacetime UK right now – this reminds me of how tough it is for them – well put Adam.
Well said, adam, And for so many the all clear will be too late. I can’t believe we are still there, still caught in a spiderweb of oil, lies and violence. And for the men and women who are in the middle of it all, your poem speaks of the terror and the immediacy of the risks with a tongue of fire.
I was going to say ‘Blown away’ ~ and I was ~ but so overwhelmed by your wonderful originality and take as ever Adam ~ yes, in the grip of the ‘immediacy’ of ‘terror’ (70 years anniversary of May Blitz WW2) ~ I was right on the edge throughout ~ Lib ~ @Libithina
…reading it gave me a chill Adam! Brilliant writing! I sincerely appreciate how well you described the intimate details of being in a combat situation. I am a USAF veteran, and consider myself fortunate to not have directly experienced the dynamics of war. However, as a medical service specialist, I certainly saw the results of it. To quote a few lines from an old song, “War! What is it good for? Absolutely nothin’”.
I won’t bother putting it lightly: Reading this scared the living crap out of me. I am thankful I did not do so before bed.
If I had a wish, it would be that every person who had the power to send young men and women into war could read these 55 words before making that decision. Well done, as always. Downright frightening, chilling to the bone, and shockingly real, but still… well done.
Love the interpretation… powerful images of war, succombing to the sand and the sounds of… glad self-destruction didn’t give in to the alarm blare. All too often these images are held within the soul, later to add to a self-destructing end.
What a burst of emotion! Wonderful flash fiction piece Adam, the carried sand of the photography goes so well with the gusted torment of battle you captured. Have I told you how great you are!?! Loved it again ~ Rose