Used with special permission of the author.
Copyright ©1968 — All rights reserved.
May not be duplicated without permission.
You can have your Army khakis
and your Navy blues but
here’s a different fighting man
I’ll introduce to you.
His uniform is unlike
any you’ve ever seen,
the Germans called him “devil dog,”
his title is “Marine”.
He was trained in Parris Island,
the place that God forgot,
the sand was fourteen inches deep,
the sun was blazing hot.
He awakened up one morning,
in front of his rack he’ll stand
and in through the doorway walked
a giant of a man.
He turned and faced this young Marine
with eyes as cold as steel,
he said, “I am your DI
and this is for real.
I’ll make your life as miserable
as miserable as I can,
and when you finally leave this place
you’ll be a fighting man.
You’ll be a rifle expert,
you’ll know your weapon well,
and when you encounter the Viet Cong,
you’ll send their souls to Hell.
Now gather around you young Marines
and lend me all your ears,
and I’ll tell you of a few things
we’ve conquered through the years.
We fought at Iwo Jima,
the land of fire and Hell,
we killed all those Japanese
and took their land as well.
Now you can tell your ladies
and this my Lad is true,
to get herself a young “Marine”
there is nothing he can’t do.
He’s peeled a million onions
and twice as many spuds,
then you’ll find him in the slopchutes,
a soaking up the suds.
And when he gets to Heaven,
St. Peter he will tell,
another “Marine” reporting, Sir.
I’ve served my time in Hell.
* * *
The author: David L. Bell, USMC 1968–1971.
Dress Blue recipient: Parris Island, 1968