Michael Bishop was born on November 12, 1945.
Bishop won back to back Nebula Awards in 1982 for his novelette “The Quickening” and in 1983 for his novel No Enemy But Time. In 2009, he won the Shirley Jackson Award for “The Pile,” His novel Unicorn Mountain received the Mythopoeic Award, and his poem “For a Lady Physicist” won the Rhysling Award. He has twice won the Southeastern SF Achievement Award for his stories “The Door Gunner” and “Bears Discover Smut.” In 1977, he was awarded the Phoenix Award by DeepSouthCon. His novel Brittle Innings is one of the best fantasy baseball novels ever published.
“Patriots” was originally published in issue six of Shayol, edited by Pat Cadigan in Winter 1982. It has been reprinted twice, first in Bishop’s Arkham House collection One Winter in Eden in 1984 and later in his collection Emphatically Not SF, Almost, as part of the Pulphouse Author’s Choice Monthly series.
Bishop’s “Patriots” fits well into his collection Emphatically Not SF, Almost because it really isn’t science fiction. It is the story of two American servicemen stationed on Guam during the Vietnam War, Lieutenant Danny Rojas and Sergeant Monegal. Rojas is concerned that he is facing a court martial and fine for his actions in Southeast Asia. The older Monegal convinces him to go for a walk with the hope that Rojas will share his great crime as a form of atonement and will go back to being his normal self.
On their walk, the two come across an older Japanese businessman, Jinsai Fujita, and his Guamian girlfriend, Rebecca Facpi. The Fujita and Monegal try to jolly Rojas out of his funk when they suddenly come under fire from a Japanese soldier who has been living on Guam since World War II and is not convinced that the war is over, and has been fighting it for longer than Rojas has been alive.