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Old 12-13-2005, 12:15 PM
nkowi
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Golden, CO
Posts: 452
A Christmas Poem

If you've seen this before, forgive me - I hadn't.



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.



Joe Reagan
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"Diplomacy is the art of saying 'nice doggie' until you can find a rock."
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