A Marine's Night Before Christmas

"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 house 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 Marine, once I could see clearly.

The Marine 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 Marine.

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
Marines 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 Marines,
like the one lying here.

I couldn't help but 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 Marine 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 Marine 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 Marine 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!"
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Comments (1)

Oh my god...sigh

I just *have* to say, you are *such* a good man. I wish they wouldn't keep sending all of ye off to so many inhumane wars....
But having said that...in your isolation, your virtues that you so movingly portray here, are just so selfless, good, and yes, *pure*.
It reminds me of something from very long ago.
I commend you so highly. You, as an individual who has obviously got such a intense awareness of what's good and right.
I know you obviously couldn't comment negatively in public, on the ethics and motives of individual wars the US has been involved in.
But again, that aside, I just think your own motives and intents are nothing but the finest. The best in fact.
It must be mentioned, there *is* a stark contrast between the private wishes of 'Santa' and the wishes of the poor devoted servant lying Spartan-like on the hard floor. Maybe they should talk to each other more. A lot more. There is an obvious pain and sense of unsettlement between them. I don't think either of them are truly happy...though being able to at least allow Santa to observe and comment on a public forum, is a life saving BUT emergency relief.
Santa shows remarkable sensitivity & compassion, such like which one wouldn't naturally associate with a warrior. It seems like the soul of the warrior bard...the soldier who didn't enjoy killing or violence at all, because he was blessed or cursed with the greater vision to see the greater tragedy in any of it.
"His father's sword he hath girded on,
And his wild harp slung behind him..."

The man is still a poet though... a just & compassionate defender of a faith. He is wise....


It would be the greatest tragedy though if something like

"The harp he lov'd ne'er spoke again,
For he tore its chords asunder"

were ever to happen...and Santa didn't come visit the valiant soldier any more sigh

Anyway, Happy Christmas, Knight of the Old Code.
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created Dec 2009
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