04.MAR.12; Forward Operating Base [Heartland] May11

04.MAR.12; Forward O...

I lay in bed for hours with my earphones in, unable to sleep.  The daytime world hammers on outside the tent.  Saws and hammers.  Rotary wing. I can separate Chinooks, Apaches and Kiowas by sound. I roll in my bag, lingering in that drowsy state between exhaustion and sleep.  My eyes are...

Trigger Warning

The green LED on the bottom of my phone flashed. I didn’t have to thumb the button to see who it was. I’d spilled whiskey on it a few days before. It auto-selected things for me. Skynet Phone. A few minutes later it flashed again. Voicemail. I thumbed in the code and hit play....

Phantom Pain

Phantom pain is the sensation in amputees of pain in a missing limb. About eighty percent of amputees will experience phantom pain at some point in their lives. A buddy who I haven’t talked to in years got both his legs blown off by an IED. He had already discharged out of the Corps. Contract...

Easier to Die

When I was twenty I dated a girl named Abigail whose father was a colonel in the Corps. She was adorable, but wouldn’t have sex with me. Our brief relationship ended with my deployment overseas, where chastity was viewed less as a virtue and more as a punchline. After a few months came the...