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You can take your Army khaki and keep your Navy blue, here’s the story of a fighting man I’ll introduce to you.
The Germans call him “devil dog” and his uniform is green,
he’s the world’s best fighting man, his real name is Marine.

He took his training at P.I., the land that God forgot, where the sand is 14 inches deep and the sun is blazing hot,
And when he dies, to Saint Peter he will tell: “another Marine reporting Sir, I served my time in hell”.
But if Saint Peter turns his back and sends him down below, 
He’ll kick the devil off the throne and run the whole darn show.

So girls, take this advice I give to you, 
Get yourself a “Leatherneck,” there isn’t a thing a Marine can’t do!

~ Often attributed to Hal Popplewell


by Cpl. Robert Lin Cook

Jan 1942-Sep 1945

I'm just a crusty old Marine

who fought with rifle 

and carbine,

when it comes to hell

I've been through

shot and shell and

a lot of what comes

 in between.


I'm just a crusty old Marine

and sometimes inclined

to be mean,

when you see a buddy fall

and you know he gave his all

then you're inclined

to annihilate the scene.


 I'm just a crusty old Marine

who has seen some things

that you should never see

for out there in the field a

man becomes less than real,

and is inclined to do

some unforgiving things.


Yes, I'm a crusty old Marine and

I swore to keep my honor clean

and through it all I vow

that I did — somehow.

And I bless the Corps

that taught me

to be the man

I should be:

a regulation,

crusty old Marine.


*     *     *

The author: Robert Cook served with Reg. Weapons Co. (2d-2d) from 1942-44, at Guadalcanal and Tarawa during a 33-month overseas tour.

To Read more of R. L. Cook's Marine Poetry check out this webpage Thanks to Francis Duffy

USMC & RVN, 1966-69

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