Before now poetry has taken notice
Of wars, and what are wars but politics
Transformed from chronic to acute and bloody?
from "Build Soil"
Robert Frost

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Nervous Tics

Several days ago we were on another mission out through the farmland surrounding Falluja. It's the middle of the night, and my truck is out in front again, swapping places periodically with the mine sweeping truck. The road is ugly- it's narrow, muddy, sloped slightly towards the deep canal on the right, and elevated between six and ten feet above the field to the left. It's the kind of road that would make you nervous to drive on at home, and here there are people trying to blast you off of it into the canal. It makes me very nervous.

Usually, I tend to avoid thinking about things that make me nervous. There's too many of them. That night, however, I started to compile a list in my mind. It's quite a list, and as anyone who has been to Iraq or even seen a few pictures knows, the items on the list are everywhere.

Blast holes.
Man holes.
Cut-out holes.
Concrete patches in holes.
Dug up and/or disturbed earth.
Broken concrete.
Bumps in the road.
Geometric arrangements of rocks, sticks, or scrap.
Dirt roads.
Canal roads.
Paved roads.
Narrow roads.
Elevated roads.
Muddy roads.
Moving traffic.
Stopped traffic.
Twisted hulks of vehicles.
Abandoned vehicles.
Especially fuel tankers.
Absence of people.
Strings that look like either.
Cassette tape.
Tall reeds.

There's a sampling. I'll edit later with more entries and some pictures.


  1. i guess it would be in poor taste to say "sounds like miami"?? (just trying to lighten the load a little td!) be safe my friend.....

    smiles, bee

    and y'all don't forget to vote for td and sarge charlie!!! thanks....

  2. My thoughts are with you every day TD, stay safe, all those thing should cause you some concern......

  3. In other words, pretty much everything... I second what Sarge Charlie said, TD.

  4. Your list is a poem--or the beginnings of one. Did you realize that?

  5. Anonymous25/2/07 10:53

    Actually, it sounds a lot like a country western tune.
    Stay safe TD - keep your Force Field up - or at least have duct tape handy (Duct tape and the "Force" - they both have a light side, a dark side, and keep the universe together, as well as many other things)
    ~an Army Mom

  6. New reader here. That's an eerie list. Thank you for reporting the reality, and thank you more than I could ever say for protecting the USA.

  7. new reader here from ECR - thank you, truly, for sharing your reality.

  8. Houston freeway constuction. Minus the people trying to kill you. Unless you are in a bad neighbor hood.

    Don't think we have to worry too much over here.

    Prayers are with you.


  9. Trackbacked by The Thunder Run - Web Reconnaissance for 02/26/2007
    A short recon of what’s out there that might draw your attention.

  10. Anonymous2/3/07 19:02

    Thank you.

  11. Anonymous6/3/07 16:01

    Young kids doing the finger slash across their neck.