At that moment there was a brigade in northern-Iraq

Three battalions+ in Mosul

A squadron+ in Tal’Afar

One platoon in sector, one on standby back at FOB Sykes

And us.

Among the ‘us’, my twenty-one strong

Strategically scattered about

Tonight at this OP, shacked-up in a dusty old room

In the southeast corner of the old Ottoman Castle

Were us three.

Us three alone in the dead of night

Awash in the green glow from our night vision

The secretly-restless city beneath night’s black curtain

The AIF will stir.

But until they do it is just use three

Alone together

With our thoughts, a story or two

And the ghosts of Tal’Afar.

About anotherwarriorpoet

Mathew Bocian served as a Captain in the United States Army with the Stryker Brigade and was deployed to Mosul and Tal'Afar in 2004 - 2005, and to Baghdad for The Surge in 2007 - 2008. He left the Army in 2012 and now uses his poetry as a way to heal from the traumas of war, while attempting to express to readers the realities of war. He is the recipient of the Bronze Star and Purple Heart, and holds a master's from the Graduate School for Public and International Affairs at the University of Pittsburgh.
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1 Response to Numbers

  1. Thank you for sharing.


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