Closing the Hotel Kitchen by Robert Bohm

Robert Bohm was drafted into the Army in 1967, and served in Germany with the 225th Station Hospital as a clerk where he “heard horror stories from wounded grunts and others who suffered combat related mental disorders.”  Much of what Bohm heard and overheard ended up in this book.

There is a lot of the Vietnam War in Closing the Hotel Kitchen (West End Press, 96 pp., $13.95, paper), a powerful, book-length poem, and the war often intrudes when the reader least expects it—just as it does in real life for many Vietnam veterans. 

The Tan Cang Bar “by the docks” pops up so often that it almost becomes a character in this book of overwhelming images dealing with the pervasive influence of war on our lives.  This book is not for the faint of heart.

Bohm’s website is www.robertbohm.com

—David Willson

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