Fat Cook Gunfight
A Non-Fiction Poem
By J.B. Stevens
I once got in a gunfight,
On the edge of Sadr City,
With a fat cook standing by my side.
I was young and immortal,
In a beige world,
The fat cook told me to go fuck myself.
I made him truck hot chow to my combat outpost for my men.
Fat cook loathed me for it.
But I didn’t care and never will.
Fuck fat cook.
It smelled of dry concrete, and dust got in my mouth,
And the sounds left my ears and it was peaceful and bright.
And the sun cut through the grime and it is shining in my memory.
Fat cook was a Sergeant and I was a Captain,
And Heartbreak Ridge was my fully funded MFA program.
The next day cook asked me to put him in for an award,
And I did,
And he got it,
And I will live forever.
And I can never die.