Tuesday, December 16, 2008


I received this Beautiful Poem in my e-mail today
it touched my heart in a special way.
I don't really know why I feel so strongly
about what these wonderful selfless men and women
do for us.. But I am sure grateful that they do it.


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.'

PLEASE, would you do me the kind favor
of sending this to as many people as you can?
Christmas will be coming soon,
and some credit is due
to our U.S service men and women
for our being able to celebrate these festivities.
Let's try in this small way to pay
a tiny bit of what we owe.

Make people stop and think of our heroes,
living and dead,
who sacrificed themselves for us.

LCDR Jeff Giles, SC,
USN 30th Naval Construction Regiment OIC,
Logistics Cell One Al Taqqadum, Iraq



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