Dr. Dennis L. Siluk’s has published 72-International Book. He is a poet since twelve years old, a writer, Psychologist, Ordained Minister, Decorated Veteran from the Vietnam War, Doctor in Arts and Education, and Doctor Honoris Causa from the National University of Central Peru, UNCP. He was nominated Poet Laureate in Peru. One of his books, “The Galilean”, took Honorable Mention at the 2016 Paris Book Festival and received an award from the Congress of Peru, for his cultural writings.
“Give me some poison!” said a customer, in Riga,
“I’m sorry sir,” said the proprietor, “we’re all
Then he stopped and thought a moment, said:
“Wait a minute; I do have some strychnine, for how
many?” he asked.
“About ten,” said the customer.
“Here,” said the proprietor, “these should do it,”
him ten in pill form…
How much do I owe you?” he questioned.
“Naught,” he said, “we never charge for such
long ago, in 1952 (I was five years old then) 20,000 people escaped under the
Iron Curtain a month, to find themselves refugees, trying to find free
countries to live in. Most tried to go to America, one way or another. Should
we forget this, perhaps it might be wise to remember, poison for customers,
behind the Iron curtain, were often sold out in the local city and small town
stores; that’s how bad it was; or we could say, that is how bad the world was. The author’s Grandfather was born in that
area, and escaped in1916, to England, onto New York City, and then to St. Paul,
Minnesota, his brother going to South America (Anton Siluk).
It is hard for these
folks, journalists, writing commentators, and surely those who have never faced
war, like Bill Keller, and James Carroll, for the New York Times, to give cheap
if not silly advice on Iranian containment, for Iranian containment that is, or
at least advocating it. What I believe America or Israel should do, of which
Israel perhaps can no longer do without the United States because they’ve
delayed too long, is stop thinking like Americans, think like Islamic-
Hitlerism, that is to say: don’t think rational, logical, they think in
impracticalities, Saddam would rather drain all his oil fields, or burn them up
than give them to his people or let the world have them. Is this practical thinking? Napoleon would
have rather seen half his army decapitated than give one inch of ground. Stalin
killed 40-million citizens without a blink of an eye. Hitler was responsible
for 80-million deaths. What makes these commentators think Iran will not use
the big bomb? Thus, we should do what we did in Iraq, knowing this time, there
are nuclear substance laying about, we should make a full-scale invasion of
Iran, occupy it, blow the daylights out of their nuclear program, Ike would
have done that, actually he threatened
to use the big bomb on Iran if they’d not step in line, check your
history books. We have a real threat
here. In consequence, we’d additional
solve a few more of the world aches and pains: Hezbollah would dry up some; a
nuclear arms race in that area would halt; Israel could step down from being on
a 24-hour alert. Obama-ism, which is really, passivism, is simply because he is
out of sorts, a man of no military rank, who said “Hell with America,” what can
you expect with such a man; a man whose Christianity is no more than a
Voodooist. Plus, Syria would stop
getting their military rations from Iran, and there’d not be anymore clashes
across the border with Americans in Iraq. To put it into a theological tone,
had Satan, or Lucifer, not been harnessed by God, that is to say, had he
completely been let loose to do at will whatever he wanted to or was capable of
doing: man would have been destroyed—totally, and that is how we got to think
of this kind of mindset with the leaders in Iran, that runs through Iran veins,
and perhaps those that think like Iran: lest we want to be back in the trees
with the monkeys.
Old Oscar was an odd old fellow, whom never quite put
together Chick Evens’ capriciousness. Had become accustomed to his abrupt
visits that he viewed them all as matters of course, never knowing the
underlining reasons for them. Should it ever be necessary to be told them,
perhaps he would have?
always asking questions, as the old man quietly looked up at his face. Not once
leaving the bench in the garden at the Poor Farm, till the last.
leave and let you get some afternoon rest,” said Evens, more often than not,
when he felt the old man was tired, or he was tired and wanted to leave. The
old man with his warm flannel shirt, and thick wool socks on, and sweater in the
scorching heat of a Minnesota summer; he was eighty years of age or more: of
which he had sat facing White Bear Avenue, sat in the same iron and wooden
bench each day—day after day, after lunch, the old farm house in back of him,
rebuilt to accommodate the old, dying, and handicapped of the city. The last
home they’d ever see.
had no friends, his family never visited him, what was left of it, but Evens,
and as long as Evens visited him, which was on each Saturday throughout the
summer of 1986, he had that friend: half past noon he’d arrive. Oscar would
take his friend by the hand and ask warmly, “I’d sure like some ice-cream,” and
Evens would walk down a half mile and fetch him some, bringing it back half
melted, but nonetheless, the old man never complained.
man got to love him: well, love is a big word, perhaps, care for him is well
enough, at least well enough to ask for that treat now and then.
Saturday after Saturday passed, and they talked to each other, and Evens
continued to ask questions, telling himself, ‘The sooner I have all this down
the better,’ he was in a way getting tired of running out to the old farm each
Saturday, although he was starting to like the old man.
man started to say time and again, “I’m tired to death of living, in this
rundown cold, smoky, cracking—once upon a time farmhouse; all night long
groaning, dismal. I shall be dead by autumn, I hope.”
was the notion of the old man, and Evens on his way home would write all this
down for his psychology class at the University of Minnesota, where he was
studying: it was to him a project.
the purpose you keep coming?” asked Oscar, once again.
have told him, but he told him “I can’t say,” as if threading a needle. And
then autumn came, and Evens’ project was over and he went to see Oscar, and he
was no longer there: the bench was empty.
To bear a
noteworthy resemblance to old Oscar, the bench had somehow accumulated the old
man’s residue, leaving within it, a part of his character, he could sense
this—that is, to that of Chick Evens of our story, it was most unexplained.
reports had been several of a gaunt and grizzled old man: aging, dying, no
longer healthy, in a wholesome sense: friendless, alone and lonesome, feeble
but somehow, holding onto a smile while in quicksand. On the other hand, some secret impediment had
debarred Evens from the enjoyment and riches of his passing “A”, in his
psychology class. Perhaps for concealing his motive, which is to say, at any
rate: Oscar had died without him disclosing the ‘reason,’ the real reason, for
felt a lurking distrust within his character, difficult to account for, if even
to try and describe. “Yes,” cried his soul, “Tomorrow I will set about it.” But
the deeper he thought about it, the more it became irrevocably lost to some
hidden vault within his mind, and only once put onto paper with ink in the form
of a poem, cynically cover in a shroud,
published in his first book, yet to be published, covered in
metaphor/personification, and hence, unrecognizable—and thereafter, buried in
the truth—sunken in the sea for twenty-six years, only now to resurface for one
last recall, in the form of this vignette, which is in real time, and bona fide
((The Battle of Meuse-Argonne,
October, 1918, WWI) (Narrative Poem))
Private Anton Siluk, 1917-18, on his way to The American
AEF (American Expeditionary Forces) in Europe,
The General’s headquarters were hidden in the
Argonne, during the Meuse-Argonne battle which was to Peruse
on October, 31;
I saw him once, giving directions regarding
operations and deciding
whatever generals decide.
I had fought in the Battle of the Selle, on October 17,
With the British Fourth, and was sent forward to
fight some more, in
battle yet to be in the Forest of Argonne by the River Meuse…
nearby the Lost Battalion!
had captured 1600-prisoners and twelve guns.
It was dogged attacks, which are what we called
them, how we won: —we advanced four miles in the face of strong resistance:
Let me explain—resistance: we knew we’d have but
For recuperation, after The Battle
Selle, for the Battle of Argonne,
that was to ensue on October, 31,
So our commanders told us, and we did as they
We pushed to attack until we were incapable of
Red from the cold, per near pale as death;
Marshal Haig said, we’d earn the lasting esteem
and admiration of
Alive or dead, but surely he meant dead.
And surely enough the little time we had between
the two battles,
resting in old cold winter dugouts, trenches the
Proved we fought without rest, in the face of
Anyhow, I fought—like many,
Many, without any thought of alignment, my right
hand swelled like
belly of a porcupine,
And once attacking the enemy I had learned,
Never lose contact with the battle ahead, once you
have found it,
Lest you get disorientated, and your mind no
longer can concentrate on: life, limb, and killing: and you must kill, willing!
Lest you lose your head by and by; and many did.
never looked at disadvantages of position,
Just: attack, attack, and attack, no matter how
severe it was on us
we were the AEF, and it was calamitous for the enemy, If not for us, surely for
me: and we attacked, and attacked, north
road, in the cold, October of 1918, under the winter’s Snow.
interesting notes on WWI: During WWI,
about October 1918, there were
about 250,000 French Soldiers still in uniform; about, 250,000 British also,
they had taken big losses, and, 1.3 Million AEF American soldiers in uniform, along with 1.1-
Million Germans in uniform; perhaps a 35% advantage for the Allies, at this
point in time; in addition, it must be said, the Germans were mentally
defeated, before they were physically, they were likened to the French and
British, worn-out; where as the
Americans, were young and perhaps not as ripe as the veteran soldiers of
Europe, but eager to be tested under fire.
The Allies had a 35% advantage over the Germans with guns (or artillery), once
the Americans entered the war. The storage of American food at one point was
90,000 tons, for, forty days of command. Also, 80,000 horses were given to the
Americans from France; also
59,000-beds were brought from America
for the hospitals in Europe; one million cans
of tomato soup were requisitioned regularly.
There were 54,000-officers in the A.E.F. They had 57,000-freight cars
workable in WWI; 1900- damaged engines. America
produced 60,000-additioanl cars for the Military, having only received 7,600
while in Europe during their first months of
arrival. The program accounted for
3-million American Soldiers in total. In July of 1917, $64-millin dollars was
appropriated for aviation; in the first six months of 1918, 16,500 planes were
to be built. Over $400-million was subscribed from the Americans for the war
efforts between June of 1917 and February, 1919. It amounted to 50,000 tons of
freight per day, for 2-million men in uniform. Over 45,000 tons of munitions
and supplies were sent to the front by the Americans. Total loses, or
casualties for the British in the year 1917, between Januarys to December, were