This poetic-style memoir is a powerful rendition of a man’s experience with war, but not your typical front line soldier. This story isn’t about battle. Instead, the reader is lead through a nerve-wracking journey of military orders, headlines, and the seemingly interminable waiting of men in the background of the fight.
From the repeating line “will not be coming back alive,” introduced in Chapter 1, I was tainted with the feeling of foreboding felt by the narrator. The work is endowed with powerful imagery such as “…small shelters/ set among frozen rice paddies/ built of whatever material was available…” and “…where we are new extra without names…”
There are few wasted words in the work. As poems, each chapter can stand on its own, telling a complete story about people encountered and single events throughout the year. Together, they become a compelling work of literature.
5 Stars for a well-written study of a soldier’s life. Anyone interested in military stories enjoy reading this.