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Veterans Recall Viet Nam in Diverse Poetry and Prose Anthology
Viet Nam shaped a generation, yet decades later, the soldiers’ experience remains difficult to grasp. Now fifteen veterans have collaborated in recalling, through poetry, fiction, and personal essays, their war experiences in “More Than a Memory.”
Ann Arbor, MI (PRWEB) February 23, 2009 — No book on Viet Nam has ever completely captured the experience of that war because no one can speak for every soldier. A new anthology resolves that limited viewpoint by capturing the diverse experiences of veterans in “More Than a Memory: Reflections of Viet Nam” (ISBN 9781932690644, Modern History Press, 2008).
William Faulkner once stated, “The past is never dead. It’s not even past.” Four decades later, the legacy of America’s involvement in Viet Nam continues to haunt a nation. For fifteen Viet Nam veterans, the war shaped and still shapes who they are today. In “More Than a Memory,” through poetry, short fiction, and personal essays, these men reflect on their war experiences and how their tours of duty changed them. Their words provide a cross-section of perspectives on Viet Nam, what it meant, and what its legacy is for today.
“More Than a Memory” defines how modern warfare affects the lives of those who lived it, and how it affected their families when they returned from war. The men who have contributed to this volume each have played a part in Viet Nam, whether as medic, air cavalry, recon, forward observer, or just plain grunt. In writing about their experiences, in fictionalizing them to create a framework for meaning, or through poetry to capture the full drama, the veterans try to understand and release the pain they felt, witnessed, and too often buried. Through these diverse voices, readers come to understand the collective truth of the Viet Nam experience.
“More Than a Memory” puts each veteran’s experience in context beside that of his comrades. The anthology is a memorial to those who did not come home; it is a soldier witnessing another’s story, it is a priceless document of the past, and a reminder of mistakes that must not be made again. As a bridge between the past and future, “More Than a Memory: Reflections of Viet Nam” is the latest addition to the “Reflections of America” series published by Modern History Press. Anyone seeking to understand the Viet Nam War will find much to mull over in this long overdue collection.
About the Editor and Authors
The editor of “More Than a Memory, Victor R. Volkman, is Senior Editor of Modern History Press, a publishing house dedicated to empowering authors to speak about surviving conflict and seeking identity in modern times. Although not a veteran of any service, he is committed to seeing veterans’ stories told. Among the authors of “More Than a Memory” are Marc Levy, Tom Skiens, and Tony Swindell. Marc Levy served with Delta 1/7 Cav as an infantry medic in Viet Nam and Cambodia in 1970. He was decorated once for gallantry, twice for valor, and twice court-martialed. “The Real Deal,” a video of his war experiences, is distributed by The Cinema Guild. Tom Skiens joined the 11th light infantry brigade in Hawaii, September 1967 a year out of high school. Tom became the 4.2 inch Forward Observer (FO) for Charlie Company, 4th Battalion 3d Infantry Regiment on the USS General Gordon seven days before they arrived in Viet Nam. Tony Swindell served with the 31st PID, 11th Light Infantry Brigade (LIB), Americal Division, during 1968-69. His unit participated in the My Lai massacre in Pinkville in 1968, and he was later a witness to incidents involving the murder of Vietnamese civilians by brigade commander Col. John W. Donaldson.
“More Than a Memory: Reflections of Viet Nam” (ISBN 9781932690644, Modern History Press, 2008) can be purchased through local and online bookstores. For more information, visit www.modernhistorypress.com/more-than-a-memory. Publicity contact: www.ReaderViews.com. Review copies available upon request.