Service: Poems

Service: Poems


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Service: Poems by Bruce Lack, Robert A Fink

What Bruce Lack offers in the poems in Service is truth—complex, ambiguous, paradoxical, contradictory, impossible—about the experiences of a Marine fighting the Iraq War and the jarring transition that comes with returning home to find the war reduced to background noise for a remote civilian population. Bruce Lack’s forceful, authentic poetry confronts the human cost of sending young men and women to fight a war of questionable justification against an insurgency unbound by rules of engagement. Lack’s poems engage honestly with the frustration of fighting an elusive, ruthless enemy, the guilt of surviving when others do not, and the residual anger that may never
leave the generation of veterans of the War on Terror. Written in the voice of the Marine but directed toward and accessible to the civilian, Service is a book that seeks to close the communication gap between the two.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780896729209
Publisher: Texas Tech University Press
Publication date: 03/30/2015
Series: Walt McDonald First-Book Series
Edition description: 1
Pages: 104
Product dimensions: 5.30(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.50(d)

About the Author

Bruce Lack served honorably in the United States Marine Corps from 2003–2007, spending twenty-one months in Fallujah, Iraq. He is a recent graduate of the Helen Zell Writer’s Program at the University of Michigan. He lives in Portage, Michigan, with his wife and son.

Table of Contents

Introduction xi

Acknowledgements xvii



How Not to Write a War Poem 7

The War According to Master Sergeant Marsh 9

How We are Sick 11

When Reid Died 13

Long as I'm Wishing 15

A Teaching Moment 17

That Feeling You Can Only Describe in Arabic 19

Lessons for the Assholes from Blackwater: All These Things Can Kill You 21

The Last Five Minutes 23

Plea to Heaven 25

Rules of Engagement Pop-Quiz 27

Thirteen Months of Talking to God 29

No Applicable Regulations 31

Last Day in Fallujah 33


Our War 37


David Gomez: El Pazo, Texas 55

Get Some 57

Hadji 59

Conversation We Might Have, If We Could 61

NATO Phonetic 63

In Heaven There Are No Doors 65

Self-Portrait in Public 67

Small Talk 69

First Supper Back 71

A Reminder I Don't Need 73

Suicide Days 75

Without Regard 77

Scanning 79

Mission Statement 81

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