Basil T. Paquet was born in 1944 in Hartford, Connecticut. As a conscientious objector he was drafted into the US Army as a medic and served from 1966-1969, including service in Vietnam 1967-68 with the 24th Evacuation Hospital. In 1969 he won the Wallace Stevens Award for Poetry and holds a BA and MA from the University of Connecticut. With Jan Barry and Larry Rottmann he founded 1st Casualty Press, which in 1972 published Winning Hearts and Minds: War Poems by Vietnam Veterans, edited by Rottmann, Barry and Paquet and Free Fire Zone: Short Stories by Vietnam Veterans, in 1973.

Winning Hearts and Minds contained 13 of his poems and he has also had poems published in several magazines and anthologies. W.D. Ehrhart has said of his contribution to Winning Hearts and Minds:

Of the dozen or so poems Paquet contributes, three or four must rank as among┬áthe very best Vietnam war poems yet written. Literate without being literary, Paquet was, at the time, far and away the most skillful and practiced of the soldier poets. W.D. Ehrhart, ‘The Soldier-Poets of Vietnam’, Virginia Quarterly Review, 63.2, Spring 1987

Basil T. Paquet’s Poems:

Resources for Basil T. Paquet

Basil T. Paquet on his experiences in Vietnam: Video, 2002