Robert Rorabeck

Bronze Star - 2,572 Points (04/10/1978 / Berrien Springs)

Ambulance - Poem by Robert Rorabeck

When you are on the highway
going down the lines like
words of the poem pull over
for the ambulance her red light
district swirling, but she’ll only
take in her wounded men
with poor hearts and gaping chest wounds
watch her like a red elephant on parade
like a Christmas tree lit up her automobile
is the speedy whore of service-
here she comes, pull over for
her- it’s the law so she can get to politicians
quicker- she is about to engulf a injured man,
like alcohol- she is about to
resurrect the dead
pull over and wait for the gory
scene cross the lines and
put your eyes on that mess listen to her
scream the ambulance screws
toward you a battle cry a
rebel soldier charging a blue
hillside let her through don’t
let her see your rusty
underside, don’t let her get a whiff
of your potential wound, or she will take you along
let her whine on through
let her come and let her go
and then put your foot on the gas
collect your thoughts note the angulations of the sun
begin to think again about the movie you just
saw, let her slip on past, trying to forget dead
love no longer think of the ambulance
she’s picking up another man worse off than you
how she bled past you for him and didn’t but notice you
how she screamed on this valley through the mountains
how she hummed murder, and didn’t hide her lust for
her job do not think of the mess she is going to pick up
to rush to the hospital to replenish him in her bed,
or to send him on the further journey to the morgue,
packing with him a new marble color/ think instead of
the parts the doll’s head down in the pasture
the forgot arrowheads in the red earth in the hills
do not think of Vietnam just
Drive on,
Drive on.

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Poem Submitted: Sunday, July 24, 2005

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