To say I saved Rekah
in any way
during the riots in Muljab is,
of course,

Her beautiful brown eyes
found me before I ever saw
her slender-sari-wrapped-body,
washed in blood,
gore streaked bodies concealing her,
thus her escape from those murderous butchers.
Buried, so to live.

Her eyes locked on mine.
Then her arms were around my neck.
Her legs wrapped round my waist.
My pistol in my right hand.
My left arm locking her in place.
The instant need to protect,

“Get her to safety!

Then the Major,

“Sergeant! Sergeant!
What do you think you’re doing!?
Sergeant Hemminway!
This will never do!
This is an army camp,
not a hospital!!
She cannot stay here!
It’s not done!
Get her to her family!”

“They’re all murdered, sir.”

“Well, then get her to the authorities!”

“We are the authorities, sir.”


“Yes, sir…
Just for tonight, sir.
I’ll work out some way,
She’ll sleep on the floor…
on a blanket by my bed… sir.”

“Bloody mess!”

“Yes, sir….
Just tonight, sir.”

“One night, Sergeant!”

“One night!

I was not terribly uncomfortable on the floor
for the first, and second and third nights…
and hearing Rekah’s soft breathing
coming from my bed
above my head was

She spoke a better pigeon
than my poor Hindi.
I pieced together her story
as she joined the regiments search
for survivors –

none –

and culprits-


and she cleaned up rather well
when the men managed to piece together
some clothes to replace
her blood smeared sari.
in khaki,

And my Sikhs,
smiled at their Sergeant,

Of course
it was out of the question,
her returning to that burned out village.
And she was quite matter-of-fact in her own defense.
She didn’t belong to that dead family.
They were distant friends of her auntie…
Her family was slaughtered in the interior.
all caught up in the revolt.
Alone in every way…

Time went on.

during the seventh night
her hand reached my shoulder.
She shook me, gently.

“Come up into your bed, Sergeant…”

“Look here, Rekah… Yes, well,… I can’t just…”


I was well ready to get off the floor.

Back to back, of course,
at first.
Then the warm feeling of her breath
on the back of my neck.
The soft pressure of her breasts
against my spine.

Just seven nights to create
a softer sleep,
a gentler world.

And after a while,
after the Parson had his say,
not even the Major seemed to mind.

About Ken Greenman

Married and Happy. Retired and busy. Living in NC. 71 and counting. December 12, 2020 and it's 72! ... I would love some written comments, critiques, adulation or kind suggestions.... If you have the time and or inclination, please feel free! Not in fear but by faith. We will see. See you later! If you ever want to talk for real, email me and I will send you my cell number.... I am enjoying this!
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