12.17.2005

Merry Christmas, and God bless us all!



Well, it is finally here! Almost. Christmas, not winter holliday, but Christmas! I am jazzed for it. I just finished decorating the Christmas Tree. A fantastic Noble Fir, donated to me by the fantastic folks over at BTN. I will not be blogging until probably after the new year begins. I am taking some time for personal reflection, family, friends, and to get centered and back on course with stuff in my life. I will most likely still be reading other blogs though. Anyway, here is an adaptation of 'Twas the Night Before Christmas, by a U.S. Marine who was stationed in Okinawa when he wrote this. So, as you are home, celebrating the birth of our lord and savior this year, please say a prayer and remember those who aren't home with their loved ones, because they are out protecting our freedom to celebrate our religious holiday. Merry Christmas to everyone, and God Bless us all!

To whom we owe much
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 I DID SEE,
NO TINSEL, NO PRESENTS,
NOT EVEN A TREE.
NO STOCKING BY 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 HOME OF A SOLDIER,
ONCE I COULD SEE CLEARLY.
THE SOLDIER LAY SLEEPING,
SILENT, ALONE,
CURLED UP ON 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'D JUST READ?
CURLED UP ON A PONCHO,
FLOOR FOR A BED?
I REALIZED THE FAMILIES
THAT I SAW THIS NIGHT,
OWED THEIR LIVES TO THESE SOLDIERS
WHO WERE WILLING TO FIGHT.
SOON ROUND THE WORLD,
THE CHILDREN 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 CONTINUED 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.
THEN 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."


5 Comments:

At 12/18/2005 12:27 AM, Blogger ted said...

Hey Santa! Shoot some presents my way!

 
At 12/20/2005 6:33 PM, Blogger Daniel said...

That's quite a few lights on the tree there. The energy police will be to your house shortly to tell you that the endangered mud worm needs protecting and to turn off those lights.

Merry Christmas.

 
At 12/20/2005 10:35 PM, Blogger Gunslinger said...

Yeah, well did you see the present I have for Mr. Energy policeman under the tree?

 
At 12/22/2005 10:49 PM, Blogger everyday.wonder said...

I was all in a reflective mood at the end of that poem until I saw the picture of the M60 jutting out from beneath that prickly fir...way to burst my bubble...

 
At 12/23/2005 1:11 AM, Blogger Gunslinger said...

It is an M-249 S.A.W. (Squad Automatic Weapon)

Close enough though. That is a picture from some headquarters unit stationed in Iraq right now. That is their tree.

 

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