Saturday, May 7, 2016

Nights in Vietnam

Nights in Vietnam

(Frenchie, the Whore: a remembrance)

Peace for the Vietnam War had always been stirring, back in ’75 when it came, it came prancing out of the dust, as if having been locked up in a basement cellar, sitting stillborn, in the middle of the floor.
Although in ’71, there was still 200,000-soldiers in Nam, and we had four more years yet to go.
The Chinese, Hanoi, Russia, and the American pre-Madonna’s, everybody but America’s industries were all with loud voices, yelling for the war to stop, for America to retreat, and we bombed Hanoi, and people cried! 
We were the baby-killers.
During all this we GI’s were drinking ourselves to death, flying high on dope, playing the melancholy military soldier, far away from home, and we were!
Sitting and waiting in our uniforms, that bad-tempered green, as our Vietnamese—workforces—burnt our manure.
Well, not quite sitting, in the meantime we’d call on Frenchie!
To satisfy our lusts.
She was an independent.
And when she’d show up in our company area, most anyone with $10-bucks, fumbled in their pockets for it, for happiness, gratification, pleasure.
A few of us were ashamed of wanting it, as we did; but it couldn’t be helped (as the old saying goes: boys will be boys).
 After the morning penicillin shots—at the nearby dispensary—it couldn’t be helped either, one went back to it just the same.
One old Joe, a pal of mine, ended up—after going back to that dispensary so many times—being shipped off to Japan, to adjust his spine.
I was addicted to booze, he was addicted to sex.
We wished to love and we wished to live—
From out of a world of killing and adoring one learns to do both together.
We, —on the face of it—made more lovemaking than we had to scratch.

Frenchie was twenty-two, five-foot two, lovely, so much so, it was hard to escape her sorcery.
She made a fortune off us GI’s.
I think she had undergone castration (no ovaries); proud as a dog with two items.
That is to say, she had freedom in making her fortune, no need to dread a possible pregnancy, had she, she would have been impotent.
She had no other feminine ailments of this sort, the rest of her providential.
Part Vietnamese, the rest of her was all French, with a light-bulb diaphragm, and bottom; and an upper portion equal to Mount Everest, —figuratively speaking!
One and all thought, and so did I, was there not an easier way for her to make money?
But as I look back, there wasn’t much employment—that is Saxon puritanism talking, you were either a soldier, nun or whore; or rice planter and picker.
Respectability was old fashion, especially to the poor and hungry, in war-torn Vietnam.  
And Frenchie made good use of her assets.
Her patriotic sacrifice was to stay alive, not to feed the bee hive, and tread carefully.
She and I had a special arrangement, she hid her money under my mattress, and slept till five in the morning, and I got a discount!
Not that I wanted it—
Lest she be caught by the cowboys, those little imp-Vietnamese soldiers and skinned alive.
She had foresight, more cunning than the rest of the whores, and we soldiers were no better, whoremongrels, one could classify.  
She was light, we were shade; the two sides of medal.
My best guess, she invested.
She had her personal clientele, and much more I presume.
She never lost control of her gatherings, perfumed, and wild, she danced and sang like a gypsy; she was an entertainer as well.
Madam Frenchie got both her money and her pleasure.
She encouraged a passionate view on life.
The other whores were like phantoms to fools, smut-fingering seekers.
But Frenchie was sound popular stock, not stupid, but with definite desires.

I remember her chiefly, those nights in Vietnam, she was rendezvous, she hung out with us often at night, not just for sex, but talk, conversations.
She was for many, a backdoor to a world away from war, a pleasant intrusion.
She was the best of a world of wretchedness and rubble:
To a Christian, she would have been a flabbergast
She was to herself, a survivor.
She was a success in this world, perhaps not the next.

Perhaps Frenchie, like us GI’s: we searched as she searched, for happiness and meaning in a multi-layered world, with war of midst of madness and savagery, that seemed empty.

Note: May 6, 2016/#5231
Copyright © 5-2016 by Dennis L. Siluk, Dr. H.c.