Carl Hitchens tells his readers in Sitting With Warrior (iUniverse, 180 pp., $13.95, paper) that this book is a “work of personal memoir, myth and spirituality.” A member of Vietnam Veterans of America, Hitchens is a poet, storyteller, essayist, and blogger.
He served in the U.S. Marines, including a 1968-69 tour of duty in the Vietnam War with Alpha Company, 1st Battalion, 7th Marines in the 1st Marine Division. His book alternates prose chapters with poetry-like chapters.
That includes time at Hill 37, which is mentioned in this myth-heavy book. Hitchens describes the book as “my own recording of the Vietnam War, my survival, readjustment, and, most important, spiritual evolution for which Nam was a catalyst.”
In writing the book, he says, he “found a deeper understanding of myself and, surprisingly, a doorway into the psyche of those who fought and died, and that of the divided nation from which we came. While I started off (I thought) writing in my singular voice of experience, I discovered that I was to some extent writing in the collective voice of all combatants of war down through the ages. Along the way, I retrieved the part of myself left behind in the jungle and mountain terrain. This part was personified in the ‘young kid’ who had come with me to Vietnam.”
This a carefully edited and physically beautiful book, but much of it remains a mystery, and is enigmatic to this reader.
For more info, go to the author’s
VVA (Vietnam Veterans of America)
Copyright © 2013 - 2023 Carl Hitchens - All Rights Reserved.
Contents of this site including text and media may not be reproduced without prior written consent,
with the exception of brief quotations embodied in postings, critical articles and reviews.
Audio and video elements of this site are property of their respective owners and are used with permission.