Vox Populi

A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature

Richard Levine: One Night in America

The first time I noticed my hands
trembling, I was still a young man,
just returned from a war…

January 19, 2021 · 2 Comments

Video: My Journey from Marine to Actor — Adam Driver

Before he fought in the galactic battles of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Adam Driver was a United States Marine with 1/1 Weapons Company. He tells the story of how and why he became a Marine, the complex transition from soldier to civilian — and Arts in the Armed Forces, his nonprofit that brings theater to the military. Followed by a spirited performance of Marco Ramirez’s “I am not Batman” by Jesse J. Perez and Matt Johnson.

November 18, 2020 · 1 Comment

W. D. Ehrhart: Paul Fussell — A Remembrance

While Fussell wrote on a wide variety of subjects over his long life—ranging from Augustan humanism, Samuel Johnson, and Kingsley Amis to the 2nd Amendment, the Indianapolis 500, and travel in between-the-wars Europe—war, the irony of war, the suffering and lunacy and permanent damage of war, the unfairness of war, lay at the heart of his writing and of his being.

May 31, 2020 · 3 Comments

Barrett Swanson: The Soldier and the Soil

Their prose often stood head and shoulders above the standard freshman drivel, exhibiting a certain rigor of thought and depth of feeling that perhaps comes from having witnessed whole anthologies of trauma—entire villages razed by fire, wide-eyed children draped in gore, wives screaming beside mutilated husbands.

May 31, 2020 · Leave a comment

John Samuel Tieman: Alert

a night in a bunker when we were
kids in fatigues getting high
listening to Hendrix and the cassette stops

September 17, 2019 · Leave a comment

Chris Hedges: War and Memory

I asked my grandmother after he left what was wrong with him. “The war,” she said acidly.

July 24, 2019 · 2 Comments

Steve Nolan & NJ DeVico: The Orchestration Of War     

Steve Nolan writes: It’s one of the most common souvenirs of war, the constant ringing in the ears, or, in my case, a high-pitched squeal presumably caused by the Blackhawk … Continue reading

February 20, 2018 · Leave a comment

John Samuel Tieman: Strange Angels

  the burnt torso of a monk an enemy monk tonight a cigarette glows in the dark and is crushed . I’ve been asked to teach a course in American … Continue reading

October 6, 2017 · Leave a comment

John Samuel Tieman: My War as a Clarinetist

“One time, the band played a welcoming ceremony for these grunts – and I mean they walked right out of the bush and into “Stars and Stripes Forever.”  John Samuel … Continue reading

July 19, 2016 · 7 Comments

John Samuel Tieman: The Traveler

another gray road a homeless veteran stands at attention — You consider your obligations. You drive on. There is a running man, a shabby man. It would be easy to … Continue reading

April 22, 2015 · Leave a comment

Doug Anderson: After the War

. After the war, some of us had to have answers. Who were these people we’d had a war with? Where did they come from? Where did they learn to … Continue reading

February 4, 2015 · Leave a comment

Doug Anderson: Memphis, 1970

Came home from that war trailing death like ground fog. Wandered summers, did trim carpentry in Texas, bartending, landed in Memphis working for a marble mill where with old Thomas … Continue reading

January 22, 2015 · Leave a comment

Adam Hochschild: Why No One Remembers the Peacemakers

Celebrating War Over and Over and Peace Once Go to war and every politician will thank you, and they’ll continue to do so — with monuments and statues, war museums … Continue reading

December 13, 2014 · Leave a comment

Doug Anderson: What Combat Veterans Know

There is a war inside the war that only combat veterans know. They’re not being mysterious when they talk and seem to leave you out. They’d prefer it weren’t that … Continue reading

November 11, 2014 · Leave a comment

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