by Cpl. Robert Lin Cook
Jan 1942-Sep 1945

"Rifles, belts and bayonets!"
was a daily call
every time we fell out
and ranked up by the wall.

If you went out for troop and drill
in weather hot or weather chill,
you could bet you'd better get
those rifles, belts and bayonets.

I'd grab them up and run like hell
and fall in first before they'd yell,
"Lad, where've you been?"

Those yardbirds standing in a row
wouldn't know just where to go
without rifles, belts and bayonets.

I guess wherever I'll go
though years go by and I get slow,
the order I'll  remember best
is "Rifles, belts and bayonets."

*     *     *
The author: Robert Lin Cook served with Reg. Weapons Co. (2d-2d) from 1942-44, at Guadalcanal & Tarawa during a 33-month overseas tour.

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Rifles, Belts and Bayonets