Stanza 165


The crew on board the CH-46
Were overjoyed to see the derelicts
Abandon their implacable assault.
Because the C-130 put a halt
To hostile action, rescue quickly came
As several LAVs achieved their aim
And reached the fallen phrog. The ecstasy
Of the survivors when the infantry
Arrived to rescue them, was tempered by
The knowledge that so many had to die
So they could live. They helped their rescuers
Collect the dead before the villagers
Could strike again. Then as the grisly toll
Passed ninety bodies, sorrow pierced the soul
Of every crewman. Plain arithmetic
Diminished happiness and made them sick.
To make it worse Spade soon declared, "My craft
Is now skosh fuel. Intrepid, I will have
To bingo to Kirkuk." A frantic race
Began to transport corpses to the base.