Dreams That Blister Sleep: A Nurse in Viet Nam

Friday, June 5th/Pleiku RVN

It’s about fifty feet down to the door of Surgery. That is my responsibility, my war, from the helipad into the Emergency Room and down fifty feet of hall. The patients are stacked like wood and I come  home covered with blood. The men come in, they go out, we never know from where or to where. The war is just one room with bright blue walls. We strip the patients naked, one person on either side with big scissors, cutting up the uniform and down into the combat boots. The admission clerk stands with clipboard in hand, asking questions . . .


Myth is the secret opening through which the inexhaustible energies of the cosmos pour into human cultural manifestation. Religions, philosophies, arts, the social forms of primitive and historic man, prime discoveries in science and technology, the very dreams that blister sleep, boil up from the basic, magic ring of myth.

~Joseph Campbell. The Hero with a Thousand Faces, 1949

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