The Dead Guerilla

They dumped him down at my feet,
gutshot neat, and cold stone dead,
then laid his body in a dusty heap,
beneath the bright green leaves of a Mopami.

Just one more guerilla for the body count,
in a communist uniform caked in blood,
and the dark red dirt of the Rhodesian veld,
and the soft warm breeze of an African morning.

Caught in an ambush the Stick Commander said,
as the Fire Force crew did a weapons check,
and rearmed the stick for the next patrol,
one wounded, one K.I.A. and one bastard got clean away.

Not even a fuckin' AK on him, the Corporal said,
just a couple of grenades in his belt,
as we checked his stiffened body,
and took fingerprints for the special branch in Salisbury.

Strange said the Trooper as we turned him over,
to roll him in the grave,
there's an exit wound in his brain old chap,
I guess a pistol in the mouth sure simplifies the paperwork.

No more the guerilla songs, I hummed,
no more the war trail from Zambia,
and no more the freedom fighter for this young man.
Somewhere a Matabele mother's heart is broken...
but yet she doesn't know it.

(C) Copyright 2000
Mike Subritzky
All Rights Reserved