Classic Toy by Mary M. Brown

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Classic Toy by Mary M. Brown

The plastic army men are always green.

They’re caught in awkward poses,
one arm outstretched as if to fire,
legs parted and forever stuck on a swiggle
of support, as rigid and green as the boots.

This one has impressions of pockets,
a belt, a collar, a grip on tiny binoculars
intended to enlarge, no doubt, some
tiny enemy.

In back, attached to the belt is a canteen
or a grenade (it’s hard to tell). The helmet
is pulled down low, so as to hide the eyes.

If I point the arm, the gun, toward me,
I see that this soldier is very thin.

It’s almost unreal, how thin he is.


  1. great poem... albeit a bit twisted maybe

  2. I missed this yesterday, but wow. How poignant.

  3. Army green, Navy blue.
    Colors that mean something.

  4. I remember those plastic soldiers from my childhood!

  5. this is really interesting. i am going to have to reflect on this poem a bit. thanks for sharing it!

  6. Another CBS Sunday Morning reference for you: the green army men were inducted into the Toy Hall of Fame this year! Along with the Rubik's Cube and...bubbles. Bubbles! xo


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