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Soldier Poems and Stories

 
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gwsiii



Joined: Aug 21 2003
Posts: 2213
Location: Hayden, AL

PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2006 2:22 pm    Post subject: Soldier Poems and Stories Reply with quote

"A veteran is someone who, at one point in his
life, wrote a blank check made payable to 'The
United States of America' for an amount of 'up to
and including my life.' That is Honor, and there
are way too many people in this country who no
longer understand it." - Unknown


Here's a link to a touching tribute to our Veterans that we are losing every day.

A Soldier Died Today

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Last edited by gwsiii on Thu Jan 22, 2009 9:03 am; edited 3 times in total
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gwsiii



Joined: Aug 21 2003
Posts: 2213
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 9:52 am    Post subject: Another Soldier Poem Reply with quote

Another Soldier Poem with a Christmas Theme. click on the title for more information about them at snopes.com.

A DIFFERENT CHRISTMAS POEM more information at Snopes.com
The embers glowed softly, and in their dim light,
I gazed round the room and I cherished the sight.
My wife was asleep, her head on my chest,
My daughter beside me, angelic in rest.
Outside the snow fell, a blanket of white,
transforming the yard to a winter delight.
The sparkling lights in the tree I believe,
Completed the magic that was Christmas Eve.
My eyelids were heavy, my breathing was deep,
Secure and surrounded by love I would sleep.
In perfect contentment, or so it would seem,
So I slumbered, perhaps I started to dream.

The sound wasn't loud, and it wasn't too near,
But I opened my eyes when it tickled my ear.
Perhaps just a cough, I didn't quite know,
Then the sure sound of footsteps outside in the snow.
My soul gave a tremble, I struggled to hear,
And I crept to the door just to see who was near.
Standing out in the cold and the dark of the night,
a lone figure stood, his face weary and tight.

A soldier, I puzzled, some twenty years old,
Perhaps a Marine, huddled here in the cold.
Alone in the dark, he looked up and smiled,
standing watch over me, and my wife and my child.
"What are you doing?" I asked without fear,
"Come in this moment, it's freezing out here!
Put down your pack, brush the snow from your sleeve,
You should be at home on a cold Christmas Eve!"

For barely a moment; I saw his eyes shift,
Away from the cold and the snow blown in drifts..
To the window that danced with a warm fire's light.
Then he sighed and he said "Its really all right,
I'm out here by choice. I'm here every night."
"It's my duty to stand at the front of the line,
That separates you from the darkest of times.
No one had to ask or beg or implore me,
I'm proud to stand here like my fathers before me.
My Gramps died at 'Pearl on a day in December,"
Then he sighed, "That's a Christmas 'Gram always remembers."
My dad stood his watch in the jungles of 'Nam',
And now it is my turn and so, here I am.
I've not seen my own son in more than a while,
But my wife sends me pictures, he's sure got her smile.

Then he bent and he carefully pulled from
his bag, The red, white, and blue... an American flag.
"I can live through the cold and the being alone,
Away from my family , my house and my home.
I can stand at my post through the rain and the sleet,
I can sleep in a foxhole with little to eat.
I can carry the weight of killing another,
Or lay down my life with my sister and brother..
Who stand at the front against any and all,
To ensure for all time that this flag will not fall."

"So go back inside," he said, "harbor no fright,
Your family is waiting and I'll be all right."
"But isn't there something I can do, at the least,
"Give you money," I asked, "or prepare you a feast?"
It seems all too little for all that you've done,
For being away from your wife and your son."
Then his eye welled a tear that held no regret,
"Just tell us you love us, and never forget.
To fight for our rights back at home while we're gone,
To stand your own watch, no matter how long.
For when we come home, either standing or dead,
To know you remember we fought and we bled.
Is payment enough, and with that we will trust,
That we mattered to you as you mattered to us.
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gwsiii



Joined: Aug 21 2003
Posts: 2213
Location: Hayden, AL

PostPosted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 10:09 am    Post subject: The Soldier's Night Before Christmas (poem) Reply with quote


The Soldier's Night Before Christmas more information at Snopes.com
Twas the night before Christmas, he lived all alone
In a one bedroom house made of plaster and stone.
I had come down the chimney with presents to give,
And to see just who in this home did live.

I looked all about, a strange sight did I see,
No tinsel, no presents, not even a tree.
No stocking by the mantle, just boots filled with sand,
On the wall hung pictures of far distant lands.

With medals and badges, awards of all kinds,
A sober thought came through my mind.
For this house was different, it was dark and dreary,
I found the house of a Soldier, once I could see clearly.

The Soldier lay sleeping, silent, alone,
curled upon the floor in this one bedroom home.
The face was so gentle, the room in such disorder,
Not how I pictured a United States Soldier.

Was this the hero of whom I just read?
Curled up on a poncho, the floor for a bed?
I realized the families I saw on this night,
owed their lives to these Soldiers, who were willing to fight.

Soon round the world the childen would play,
And grownups would celebrate a bright Christmas day.
They all enjoyed freedom each month of the year,
Because of the Soldiers, like the one lying here.

I couldn't help wonder how many lay alone,
on a cold Christmas Eve, in a land far from home.
The very thought brought a tear to my eye,
I dropped to my knees and started to cry.

The Soldier awakened and I heard a rough voice,
"Santa, don't cry, this life is my choice;
I fight for freedom, I don't ask for more,
My life is my God, my country, my Corps."

The Soldier rolled over and drifted to sleep,
I couldn't control it, I started to weep.
I kept watch for hours, so silent and still
And we both shivered from the cold night's chill.

I didn't want to leave on that cold, dark night
This Guardian of Honor so willing to fight.
The Soldier rolled over, with a voice soft and pure,
whispered,"Carry on, Santa, It's Christmas Day, All is secure."

One look at my watch and I knew he was right
Merry Christmas, my friend, and to all a Good Night!

Several versions of this poem exist.
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 9:36 am    Post subject: More Soldier Poems, Veterans Day 2008 Reply with quote

To all of our Veterans past, present, and future: Thank You!
some poems for Veteran's Day and other occasions, feel fee to post your favorites:

THE FINAL INSPECTION

The soldier stood and faced his God
Which must always come to pass
He hoped his shoes were shining
Just as brightly as his brass

"Step foward now you soldier,
How shall I deal with you?
Have you always turned the other cheek,
And to my church have you been true?"

The soldier squared his shoulders and said,
"No Lord, I guess I ain't,
Because those of us who carry guns,
Can't always be saints

"I've had to work most Sundays
And at times my talk was tough
And sometimes I've been violent
Because the streets were awfully rough"

But I never took a penny,
That was'nt mine to keep
Though I worked a lot of overtime
When the bills just got to steep,

And I never passed a cry for help
Although, at times I shook with fear
And sometimes, God forgive
I've wept unmanly tears

I know I don't deserve a place
Among the people here
That never wanted me around
Except to calm there fears

If you have a place for me here O' Lord
It needn't be so grand
I've never expected, or had so much
But if you don't I'll understand"

There was a silence all around the throne
Where the Saints had often trod
As this soldier waited quietly
For the judgment from his God

"Step foward now you soldier,
You've borne your burdens well
Walk peacefully on Heaven's streets,
You've done your time in Hell"
------------------------------------------
The Flag
A protest raged on a courthouse lawn,
round a makeshift stage they charged on.
Fifteen hundred or more they say,
had come to burn the Flag that day.

A boy held up the folded Flag,
cursed it and called it a dirty rag.
A man pushed through the angry crowd,
with an old gun shouldered proud.

His uniform jacket was old and tight,
he had polished each button, shiny and bright.
He crossed the stage with military grace,
until he and the boy stood face to face.

Then the old man broke the silence.

"Freedom of speech, is worth dying for,
Good men are gone, they live no more.
All so you can stand on this courthouse lawn,
and ramble on from dusk to dawn.

But before the Flag gets burned today,
this old veteran is going to have his say.

My father died on a foreign shore,
in a war they said would end all wars.
Tommy and I weren't even full grown,
before we fought in a war of our own.
Tommy died on Iwo Jima's beach,
in the shadow of a hill he couldn't reach.

Where five good men raised this Flag so high,
that the whole world could see it fly.

I got this bum leg that I still drag,
fighting for this same old Flag.

There's but one shot in this old gun, so now it's time to decide which one.

Which one of you will follow our lead, to stand and die for what you believe?"

The boy who had called it a dirty rag,handed the veteran the folded Flag.

The crowd got quiet as they walked away, to talk about what they heard that day.

So the battle for the Flag this day was won, by a loyal veteran with a single gun.
Who for one last time, had to show to some, That these colors will never, never run.

It is the veteran, not the preacher,who has given us freedom of religion.

It is the veteran, not the reporter, who has given us freedom of the press.

It is the veteran, not the poet, who has given us freedom of speech.

It is the veteran, not the campus organizer, who has given us freedom to assemble.

It is the veteran, not the lawyer, who has given us the right to a fair trial.

It is the veteran, not the politician,Who has given us the right to vote.

It is the veteran, who salutes the Flag, who serves under the Flag, whose coffin is draped by the Flag.
------------------------------------------
It Has Always Been The Soldier.
It is the soldier,
not the President who gives us democracy.
It is the soldier,
not the Congress who takes care of us.
It is the soldier,
not the Reporter who has given us Freedom of Press.
It is the soldier,
not the Poet who has given us Freedom of Speech.
It is the soldier,
not the campus Organizer who has given us the
Freedom to Demonstrate.
It is the soldier,
who salutes the flag;
who serves beneath the flag,
and whose coffin is draped by the flag,
that allows the protester to burn the flag.
(Father Dennis O'Brien, US Marine Corp. Chaplain)
-----------------------------------------------------------
Daddy's Day At School

Her hair was up in a ponytail
Her favorite dress tied with a bow.
Today was Daddy's Day at school,
And she couldn't wait to go.

But her mommy tried to tell her,
That she probably should stay home.
Why the kids might not understand,
If she went to school alone.

But she was not afraid;
She knew just what to say.
What to tell her classmates
Of why he wasn't there today.

But still her mother worried,
For her to face this day alone.
And that was why once again,
She tried to keep her daughter home.

But the little girl went to school,
Eager to tell them all.
About a dad she never sees
A dad who never calls.

There were daddies along the wall in back,
For everyone to meet.
Children squirming impatiently,
Anxious in their seats.

One by one the teacher called,
A student from the class.
To introduce their daddy,
As seconds slowly passed.

At last the teacher called her name,
Every child turned to stare.
Each of them was searching,
For a man who wasn't there.

"Where's her daddy at?"
She heard a boy call out.
"She probably doesn't have one,"
Another student dared to shout.

And from somewhere near the back,
She heard a daddy say,
"Looks like another deadbeat dad,
Too busy to waste his day."

The words did not offend her,
As she smiled up at her Mom.
And looked back at her teacher,
Who told her to go on.

And with hands behind her back,
Slowly she began to speak.
And out from the mouth of a child,
Came words incredibly unique.

"My Daddy couldn't be here,
Because he lives so far away.
But I know he wish's he could be,
Since this is such a special day.

And though you cannot meet him,
I wanted you to know.
All about my daddy,
And how much he loves me so.

He loved to tell me stories
He taught me to ride my bike.
He surprised me with pink roses,
And taught me to fly a kite.

We used to share fudge sundaes,
And ice cream in a cone.
And though you cannot see him,
I'm not standing here alone.

Cause my daddy's always with me,
Even though we are apart
I know because he told me,
He'll forever be in my heart"

With that, her little hand reached up,
And lay across her chest.
Feeling her own heartbeat,
Beneath her favorite dress.

And from somewhere in the crowd of dads,
Her mother stood in tears.
Proudly watching her daughter,
Who was wise beyond her years.

For she stood up for the love
Of a man not in her life.
Doing what was best for her,
Doing what was right.

And when she dropped her hand back down,
Staring straight into the crowd.
She finished with a voice so soft,
But its message clear and loud.

"I love my daddy very much,
He's my shining star.
And if he could, he'd be here,
But heaven's just too far.

You see he was a Soldier
And died just this past month
When Iraqis hit his convoy
And hurt us all so much.

But sometimes when I close my eyes,
It's like he never went away.
And then she closed her eyes,
And saw him there that day.

And to her mother's amazement,
She witnessed with surprise.
A room full of daddies and children,
All starting to close their eyes.

Who knows what they saw before them,
Who knows what they felt inside.
Perhaps for merely a second,
They saw him at her side.

"I know you're with me Daddy,"
To the silence she called out.
And what happened next made believers,
Of those once filled with doubt.

Not one in that room could explain it,
For each of their eyes had been closed.
But there on the desk beside her,
Was a fragrant long-stemmed pink rose.

And a child was blessed, if only for a moment,
By the love of her shining bright star.
And given the gift of believing,
That heaven is never too far
----------------------------------------------
The Monsters and the Weak
The sun beat like a hammer, not a cloud was in the sky.
The mid-day air ran thick with dust, my throat was parched and dry.
With microphone clutched tight in hand and cameraman in tow,
I ducked beneath a fallen roof, surprised to hear "stay low."

My eyes blinked several times before in shadow I could see,
the figure stretched across the rubble, steps away from me.
He wore a cloak of burlap strips, all shades of grey and brown,
That hung in tatters till he seemed to melt into the ground.

He never turned his head or took his eye from off the scope,
but pointed through the broken wall and down the rocky slope.
"About eight hundred yards," he said, his whispered words concise,
"beneath the baggy jacket he is wearing a device."

A chill ran up my spine despite the swelter of the heat,
"You think he's gonna set it off along the crowded street?"
The sniper gave a weary sigh and said "I wouldn't doubt it,"
"unless there's something this old gun and I can do about it."

A thunderclap, a tongue of flame, the still abruptly shattered;
while citizens that walked the street were just as quickly scattered.
Till only one remained, a body crumpled on the ground,
The threat to oh so many ended by a single round.

And yet the sniper had no cheer, no hint of any gloat,
instead he pulled a logbook out and quietly he wrote.
"Hey, I could put you on TV, that shot was quite a story!"
But he surprised me once again -- "I got no wish for glory."

"Are you for real?" I asked in awe, "You don't want fame or credit?"
He looked at me with saddened eyes and said "you just don't get it."
"You see that shot-up length of wall, the one without a door?
before a mortar hit, it used to be a grocery store."

"But don't go thinking that to bomb a store is all that cruel,
the rubble just across the street -- it used to be a school.
The little kids played soccer in the field out by the road,"
His head hung low, "They never thought a car would just explode."

"As bad as all this is though, it could be a whole lot worse,"
He swallowed hard, the words came from his mouth just like a curse.
"Today the fight's on foreign land, on streets that aren't my own,"
"I'm here today 'cause if I fail, the next fight's back at home."

"And I won't let my Safeway burn, my neighbors dead inside,
don't wanna get a call from school that says my daughter died;
I pray that not a one of them will know the things I see,
nor have the work of terrorists etched in their memory."

"So you can keep your trophies and your fleeting bit of fame,
I don't care if I make the news, or if they speak my name."
He glanced toward the camera and his brow began to knot,
"If you're looking for a story, why not give this one a shot."

"Just tell the truth of what you see, without the slant or spin;
that most of us are OK and we're coming home again.
And why not tell our folks back home about the good we've done,
how when they see Americans, the kids come at a run."

You tell 'em what it means to folks here just to speak their mind,
without the fear that tyranny is just a step behind;
Describe the desert miles they walk in their first chance to vote,
or ask a soldier if he's proud, I'm sure you'll get a quote."

He turned and slid the rifle in a drag bag thickly padded,
then looked again with eyes of steel as quietly he added;
"And maybe just remind the few, if ill of us they speak,
that we are all that stands between the monsters and the weak."

Michael Marks
-------------------------------
"THAT RAGGED OLD FLAG"
I walked through a County Court House square.
On a park bench an old man was sitting there.
I Said, "Your old Court House is kinda run down."
He Said, "No, it will do for our little town."
I Said, "Your old flag Pole is leaning a little bit.
And that`s a ragged old Flag you`ve got hanging on it."

He Said, 'Have a seat," and I sat down.
"Is the first time that you`ve been to our little town?"
"Well," he said, "I don`t like to brag,
But we`re kinda proud of that ragged old Flag.
You see, we got a little hole in the Flag there,
When Washington took it across the Delaware.
And it got powder burns, the night Francis Scott Key,
Sat watching it, writing "Oh Say Can You See."
And it got a bad rip at New Orleans,
When Packingham and Jackson took it to the scene
And, it almost fell at the Alamo beside the Texas Flag
But she waved on through
She got cut with a sword at Chancerville,
And she got cut again at Shilo Hill
There was Robert E. Lee, Bouregard and Bragg
The South wind blew hard on that Old Ragged Flag
On Flanders Field in World War One
She got a big hole from a Bertha Gun
She turned BLOOD RED World War Two,
And she hung limp and low a time or two
She was in Korea and Vietnam
She went from our ships upon the briny foam
Now they`ve about quit waving her back here at home
In our good land she`s been abused,
She`s been burned, dishonored, denied, and refused
And the Government for which she stands
Is scandalized through out the land
She`s getting threadbare and she`s wearing thin,
But, she`s in good shape for the shape she`s in
Because she`s been through the fire before,
I believe she can take a whole lot more
So we raise her up every morning,
and we Take her down every night,
We don`t let her touch the ground,
and we fold her up right,
On second thought, I DO LIKE TO BRAG,
BECAUSE I`M MIGHTY PROUD OF THAT RAGGED OLD FLAG.
Link to Youtube Video]
(Author - Johnny Cash)
------------------------------------------------------
FREEDOM ISN'T FREE
I watched the flag pass by one day.
It fluttered in the breeze.
A young Marine saluted it,
And then he stood at ease.
I looked at him in uniform
So young, so tall, so proud,
With hair cut square and eyes alert
He'd stand out in any crowd.
I thought how many men like him
Had fallen through the years.
How many died on foreign soil?
How many mothers' tears?
How many pilots' planes shot down?
How many died at sea?
How many foxholes were soldiers' graves?
No, freedom isn't free.

I heard the sound of taps one night,
When everything was still
I listened to the bugler play
And felt a sudden chill.
I wondered just how many times
That taps had meant "Amen,"
When a flag had draped a coffin
Of a brother or a friend.
I thought of all the children,
Of the mothers and the wives,
Of fathers, sons and husbands
With interrupted lives.
I thought about a graveyard
At the bottom of the sea
Of unmarked graves in Arlington.
No, freedom isn't free.

Author Unknown
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gwsiii



Joined: Aug 21 2003
Posts: 2213
Location: Hayden, AL

PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 8:03 pm    Post subject: Final Salute Reply with quote

Final Salute from Rocky Mountain News
Story by Story by Jim Sheeler, photos by Todd Heisler
Published November 11, 2005 at 12:45 a.m.


Probably the most powerful news story I've ever read. It is related to the pictures below. Words can not describe.



An abbreviated version of the story with the original pictures intact.


Our thanks to all who have served and fallen: past, future, and present!
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Posts: 2213
Location: Hayden, AL

PostPosted: Thu Jan 22, 2009 9:04 am    Post subject: A Veteran Reply with quote

"A veteran is someone who, at one point in his
life, wrote a blank check made payable to 'The
United States of America' for an amount of 'up to
and including my life.' That is Honor, and there
are way too many people in this country who no
longer understand it." - Unknown
_________________
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I didn't pay to much for that old Arisaka, I just bought it a little bit too soon!
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Joined: Aug 21 2003
Posts: 2213
Location: Hayden, AL

PostPosted: Wed Dec 21, 2011 10:32 am    Post subject: Christmas Letter - December 1944 Reply with quote

A letter from Marine 1st LT Leonard Isaccks to his sons about Christmas and why we have to fight wars, written in December 1944 and available at the National World War II Museum Website.

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