Minh Dam Se­cret Zone

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Books - Martin R. John­son

For Alan

He opened his mouth and ma­chine- gun bul­lets went fly­ing all around the bar. Some of us ducked for cover. Oth­ers fired back as their own mem­o­ries opened up. Then, one by one, still dressed in their army uni­forms, his dead mates ar­rived. Go­ing by the look on their faces they weren’t old enough to be served in this ho­tel! And what a com­mo­tion the wounded caused, crowd­ing in around us with those miss­ing limbs. A look of hor­ror in their eyes. Ter­ror twist­ing their faces, cry­ing like a bunch of kids! Still it was Fri­day af­ter­noon. A good time to get things said. For­get the week. And he sat there, Viet­nam Vet in gold let­ters across the front of his blue cap, the dy­ing and the dead and bul­lets went back

inside his head.

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