by Bill Glose
Ask any private pouring diesel into a barrel of human waste, lighting it afire, mixing with a wooden paddle, standing in the black smoke, he’ll tell you: Shit flows downhill. All one-stripes on latrine duty know the motto: Rank has its privileges. Nothing to do but bitch to pals who are also stuck in the muck. Unless you have too many stripes, too much brass. Then wants and grievances get shoved in a cargo pocket, beneath maps and Op-Orders, beneath everything olive drab. Solitude is the true gift of rank. Voices muffled behind camouflage.
Bill Glose is a former paratrooper, a Gulf War veteran, and author of the poetry collection, The Human Touch (San Francisco Bay Press, 2007). In 2011, he was named the Daily Press Poet Laureate. His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in such journals and magazines as Narrative Magazine, New York Quarterly, and Poet Lore.