Stanza 129


The military expert tells his friend,
"Please cool your anger. Let me recommend
A course of action that will satisfy
Your righteous outrage and yet still deny
Initiative to the pernicious foe.
When we attack, an overwhelming blow
Must neutralize as many enemies
As possible before the companies
Assigned to execute contingent plans
React. These vile marines are veterans
Of many fights, and will not give us time
To punish them for this disturbing crime,
Unless we first attack and use surprise.
Then after they have suffered their demise,
Destruction of the gross profanity
Will follow at our leisure easily.
But if instead we hasten to destroy
This sacrilege, the foe will just deploy
A stronger force to guard what they rebuild
And leave our good intentions unfulfilled."