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Poet's Platform Column | 13 Sept. 07

by Janet Nesler | The Scioto Voice | Wheelersburg, Ohio

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These words were written during the dark days of October and November 1944, World War II.  They were in the daily journal of Vaughn Hinze, an  ambulance driver in the US Army.   The poems were sent to me by Ann Dissinger, the daughter of Mr. Hinze.  I am honored to dedicate this column to Vaughn Hinze.

"Carrying In the Hopeless"

We carried in the hopeless
Twas in the evening after sunset
And those stricken with despair
The blind and maimed and crippled
Came into our care.

The human wrecks of nations
 Of which we'd scarcely heard
Were bandaged, bathed, and bedded
 And soothed by kindly words.

Our wounded foe we welcomed
For an injured soldiers cry
Is the same in any language
When he expects to die.

We cannot help our buddies
In the tumult of the strife
But proudly we shall carry on
To try and save his life.

Vaughn Hinze,
West Portsmouth, Ohio


"In the Evening after Sunset"

With the campfires burning low
Casting long evasive shadows
Against an ancient French chateau
That we heard our armored columns
Lumbering onward to the fray
Soon to write the story
 Of our enemy's dismay.

As our coffee softly simmered
And we reminisced our plans
Talked about the old wars         /
While we opened ration cans
All the men were confident
Though full of hope and dread
For we wondered who'd be missing
And who'd be counted dead.

The smoldering embers whitened
The ashes fell to dust
Voices trailed to silence
From the problems they discussed
I crawled into my pup tent
Shivering in the dew
With a hopeful haunting wanting
To be coming home to you.

Vaughn Hinze
West Portsmouth, Ohio












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