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Monday, December 22

In Honor of All Soldiers


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, THE 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.'

Author Unknown

9 comments:

  1. I've heard this poem before and it is touching. I'm glad you included all soldiers. There are many who are giving up the comforts of home for us.

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  2. Beautiful ! Just beautiful.. Thanks for posting.
    Have you headed over to my blog and take a look at the second on down and take a look at my shop! Finally got pictures posted! Can you believe that............

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  3. Thanks for sharing this heart touching poem.

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  4. I just popped over from Tippers. That was a very nice poem. I hadn't heard it before.

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  5. Such a beautiful poem and so heartfelt, dear Mary. Reading it makes me want to bring each and every soldier to my home to celebrate Christmas with them:-) xoxo

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  6. I actually saw a published book of this at Barnes and Noble the other day, and was going to buy it...it's such a strong message.

    Happy Tuesday Mary.
    Hope you got your tree fixed!!!

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  7. This is such a beautiful poem. Our soldiers are always on guard even after they leave the military. It is their mission to protect and serve. We can never properly thank them.

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  8. Thank you for this, Mary! Both of our soldiers are safe and sound this Christmas, back home on leave with their families. We will be going to Wyoming for Christmas to see our oldest son, Sam, before he has to head back to Iraq.
    Beautiful poem!

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  9. I'm making the rounds to wish all of my blog friends a Merry Christmas!

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