He sits in a wheelchair pushed to the curb. The people around him move aside to assure he is able to see. His shrunken body a shell of what it used to be. His breathing labored, aided by the tube that extends from the oxygen tank attached to his chair. On his head, he sports a blue campaign cap with VFW stitched in gold. He is one of America's finest, come to pay his respects.
Behind him stands a younger woman who has guided him there. A daughter perhaps, fussing over him, adjusting the robe in his lap, assuring his comfort. He shows no resistance to the attention, but simply sits and waits.
In the distance drums are heard, soon to be joined by the sound of horns. A stirring march riffles over the crowd, and an electricity grips their senses. Soon the call of cadence is heard. The measured tramp of boots, perfectly in time with the music. It grows louder until at last, a military formation looms into view. Uniformed soldiers, marching in perfect rows, perfect columns, gleaming boots, ribboned chests, weapons at rest on their shoulders. The crowd stirs. Small flags are waved. Cheers erupt. Pride hangs thick in the air.
The color guard approaches. Banners held high, snapping in the breeze. Some spectators remove their caps while others cover their hearts. Children, hoisted to their fathers shoulders, clap in excitement.
The old man tugs at the woman's sleeve and motions for her to come closer. She leans down and listens as he speaks, then asks "are you sure"?. He nods his head. Walking to the front of the chair, she removes the robe and, grasping his outstretched hands, pulls him slowly to his feet, where he stands with her assistance. Those around him watch as the frail, stooped body, with some difficulty, stands more erect. They see the pain etched on his face, and the tear that escapes his eye as he offers a salute as the flag passes by.
Suddenly, the cadence count stops, and in it's place is heard a command . A command normally reserved for when passing a reviewing stand. "Company, eyes right" the guidon bearer bellows, and with that, he returns the aging veterans salute, a sign of respect for an old soldier. After all, it is his flag. It is his country. He bought them both many years ago.
Jan 10, 2012
One day I was passing time
And wrote these words upon the lines,
I know not where they came you see
The Winds of Time were there for me.
If I could open a door to the past
And there before me were the paths
I'm not quite sure which I would choose
But The Winds of Time would see me through.
The vastness there before God's Hand
Then came the heavens, the seas, the land
Eden, Noah and the Christ Child's birth
Is the path that I see first.
I'm not into Knights or dragon days,
Nor Robin Hood and his saving ways,
But give me a Viking as he crosses the seas
And I'll dream of the lands so wild and free.
The music of Irland calls to me,
Where Kathleen's heart has ever been,
And for Danny Boy the fifes do call
I'll shed my tears lest he should fall.
As Immigrants touched upon our shores
The Indians prepared to fight once more,
But fate stepped in and eased the sore
They'd live in peace forever more.
The battles fought upon this land
To protect us from Tierney's hand,
The Civil War for Freedom's right
The Alamo where comrades died.
At Little Big Horn where our soldiers died,
As Indians defend their homes with pride,
The government later took a hand
And put them on Reservation land.
I remember well, when I was quite young
The days of World War II
And how my father's life did change
When the family business he assumed.
Twenty-four seven was unheard of then,
But that was their working day,
They helped keep our nations trucks on the road
Their battlefield was here in the USA.
I'll choose the path with pastures green,
Horses, cattle and the cowboy scene,
This is the land of my mother's birth
The most precious land to me on earth.
I chose this land and took a stand,
Married a cowboy and we ranched the land.
Though now retired and family gone
This land will always be our home.
The Winds of Time, know well my soul
I'll rest at night with days of yore.
And as I wake a prayer I'll say
Please God, may we have Peace today?
The mighty 3rd to the north did steam,
Chasing a ghost not to be seen
Guard the landing your task assigned,
Quiet the day is to be benign
At dawn the Imperial fleet does appear,
Surprise complete, ranging fire splashes near
Outnumbered and out gunned, duty is clear,
Close the range you must in spite of your fear
Laying smoke, a jagged course you take,
An account of yourselves you will make
Steel your heart and make sure your eye,
For each salvo keeps you alive
Toe-to-toe the battle, you exchange mighty blows,
Triumph impossible, yet into the fray you all go
In perfect rhythm, the mad dance goes on,
As smoke filled gunhouse loads powder and shot
Decks strewn with the dead and dying,
Teams repair to keep the ensign flying
Struck and struck again, yet to point blank you steam,
Hard to port, you cross the “T”
“All guns to fire at the turn, torpedoes away!”
The enemy scatters in disarray
Too late, mortal blows you take
To the deep, no more your enemy to rake
One final salute their captain does render,
For you fought to the death and did not surrender
On this all men do still agree,
These were the finest two hours of Taffy 3
On October 25th, 1944, 3 destroyers and 4 destroyer escorts of Task Force
Taffy 3 engaged a combined force of Imperial Japanese Navy battleships and
cruisers in a 2 hour running gun battle to protect the escort carriers and troop
transports taking part in the Leyte Gulf landings in the Philippines. Two of the
three destroyers and one of the escorts were sunk while sinking three
Japanese heavy cruisers and damaged three more. Due to the fierceness of
the attack, the Japanese fleet retired from the area thinking they had been
attacked by a much larger force. At the outset of the battle, the commanding
officers of these 7 ships, without orders, individually decided to attack and
headed at flank speed to the fight all knowing they would most likely not
survive the day. Almost 1600 did not. In a final act of respect, the commander
of one Japanese cruiser saluted the crew of an American ship that had just
sunk as his ship passed them floating in the water.
Wading through flooded streets as hurricane rain poured
A man fell into the flow when sharp thunder roared
As a journalist reporting live from the scene
I saw lightning crack through the sky, heard the man scream
“Is he homeless?” I asked the emergency crew
The director shook his head; the answer he knew
“He lives in our park now, but served in Vietnam
He saved his entire unit from the Viet Cong.”
The team pulled him from the gutter to the shelter
I brought him tea, forgot I was a reporter
I asked why he’d screamed, his memory seemed hazy
“Did you hear the bombs drop?” asked Captain Bob Mazy
The emergency director took me aside
“We call him Crazy Mazy,” he did confide
He suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder
Can’t live with the lives he took following orders.”
When Hurricane Kate passed o’er the Gulf Coast
I’d seen much destruction, but remembered Mazy most
His story I broadcasted and vets contacted me
The donations poured in; so many gave freely
Soon we’d accumulated twenty-five grand
Just enough to buy Mazy an acre of land
Then people from his home state gathered one weekend
To build him a home, much effort they expended
Several social workers set up counseling services
To meet all his needs, everyone made concessions
Local stores gave him clothing, food, even a job
No longer “Crazy Mazy,” he was now just Bob
A gentle man who soon overcame all his fears
On Memorial Day, he was greeted by cheers
Accolades he’d never heard when he returned from Nam
But attitudes had changed and people’s hearts had warmed
I look up from the valley and I see the mountaintop.
Up where the air is clearer and gentle breezes never stop.
Where the eagle’s nest can be seen in a mighty cypress tree
God’s awesome splendor is waiting there for all the world to see.
In an effort to get closer to the one who made it all
I will climb the lofty mountain and listen for His call.
And when His call is heard and His orders are made clear
I will join His mighty army as the final battle nears.
The evil one will also gather all his minions here
And the battle that will follow will make nations disappear.
For all the blood that’s shed will, like a river, flow
And the valley will not be the same as the valley that we know.
The righteousness of God will certainly prevail
And Satan’s wicked army shall ultimately fail.
So if you want to be there to see how it comes out
Let destiny lead you and there will be no doubt.
Written By John Posey
I’m standing in the gap for children everywhere.
Wandering this world of sin and doesn’t have a prayer.
I’m standing in the gap for soldiers everywhere.
Fighting an earthly war and dodging bullets everywhere.
I’m standing in the gap for the families that are lost
So their souls will turn back to God
and they will come boldly to the cross.
I’m standing in the gap for my sisters and my brothers.
We must stop this war of hatred
And return to loving one another.
I’m standing in the gap for all of my fellow poets.
That your minds will be strengthened and
Your soul will be touched.
I’m standing in the gap for everyone who says pray for me.
I will intercede for you friends. No matter what the need.
I will pray for your protection all through out the day.
I will pray for your healing and the increasing of your faith.
I will pray for guidance as you go from place to place.
I will pray for His love, Mercy and Peace be with you this very day.
I’m standing in the gap for Ezekiel 22:30 says..And I sought for a man
Among them that , should make up the hedge, and
stand in the gap before me for the land, that I should not destroy it:
but I found none.
I Am Standing In the Gap….
Patricia Monteiro this one is for you. Inspired from-Who will save the Children...
The greatest holiday gift I ever received
Goes back so many, many years
Before my life became turmoiled
And before my tears for fears
I was a child like many out there
Torn, strewn and split of kin
Mother and father in differences
Confused at seven, wearing their same skin
For I was one of the lucky ones
To a Highland Estate I would go
It's on the west coast of Scotland
Where my holidays desired me so
Secretly I internally smiled
For a whisper of where I was heading
To live with a movie star hero
No longer my life was in dreading
We were picked up by a man so fine
His manners were an absolute joy
Regimental he was in his approach
To me, just a seven year old boy
We travelled through the village of Plockton
Crystal clear waters edged to it's shore
I knew from this very moment
Being here ebbed previous family sores
On entering his house I was in awe
Movie pictures came to my view
They were images of James Bond
At seven I was totally through
A voice called to me
Hey James! sit down and I'll tell you me
Still in circles in walking awe
This is what he told thee
My name is Patrick Dalzel Job
In the Second World War I served
But this recognition I bestow
Humbles me to it's deserve
This honour that's been given
Was blessed by a colleague in war
What desired Ian Fleming to be so striven
Possibly, what we were fighting for
We served on the same destroyer
Fighting to make the future free
His tribute, in his novels I became
James Bond, it's incredibly me
Not many seven year olds have stayed with James Bond.
This seven year old Scot's boy has, maybe I learnt?
To love your country,
you must commit yourself indefinetly;
there are no doubts, or fears
when it comes to defend it fervently..
do it for the sake of your family,
or your countrymen who wish for peace!
They will send you to distant lands,
away from your loved ones...
to uphold freedom and its sanctity,
and you'll shine with bravery!
Anytime peace is threatened,
you'll retaliate and engage in combat,
true soldiers always fight with self-confidence,
never retreat in any circumstance!
There'll be days of fright , of darkness and despair,
and nights to shed tears on cold pillows;
no tender eyes to glance into or arms to embrace,
but surrendering distorts your honor!
As the mission comes to its end suddenly,
and you are one of the surviivors to declare victory,
although you'll also grieve for the fallen ones:
you'll wave your flag to the calmest skies!
To love your country,
you must avail yourself of dignity
and protect its borders vigilantly;
be aware of its tremendous cost:
risk your own life,or allow
the enemy to toast!
It would be great if human beings
Were great at being human
And if all of mankind
Were made up of kind men
It would be wonderful if common knowledge
Was knowledge commonly known
And if the light from being enlightened
Into every heart was shown
It would be fantastic if the war to end all wars
Was the last war that we fought
It would be amazing if we learned the lessons
From every lesson we were taught
It would be cool if our freedom
To us was freely granted
And if every seed of kindness
Would grow wherever planted
It would be glorious if neighbors were neighborly
And prejudice a forgotten word
It would be awesome if we shared everything
And being greedy was absurd
It would be spectacular if the golden rule
Was golden to every man
And the good things that we ever did
Was everything that we can
I shall live and die
By my own accord
Only my God may judge me
To him I've proved my worth
I am still here fighting
It matters not what for
On my ship of righteousness
Headed for waters unexplored
The clear night sky will darken
And the clouds seem ominous
I take heed to the sure signs
From them I won't digress
They are in the way of my dreams
And hopes that fill my sails
Like the wind from my heaven
Keeps my skin tough as nails
Evil comes to tempt me
I am not immune
Sometimes I play the hero
Other times I'm just a fool
Either way the choice is mine
I make it with my free will
For that's the gift he gave me
And for what I fight for still
The government is coming
To bring a chaos they call order
The line has been drawn
Between two sides there is a border
I feel myself being torn
To choose a fate in stone
Let this be a lesson
Why I wander on my own
Minds can be controlled
I see it every day
The weak wills fall like dominos
That lie littering my way
An obstacle before me
I iron will it to the end
And when the devil comes
to dance with me
I have already started to transcend
into everything around
I am the universal man
my true form I shall disguise
I am hiding it from this great Satan
they say will come for my demise
I know he will find me
maybe he already has
in a long gone nightmare
that my soul he stole at last
if I remember correctly
I can't say I recall
ever escaping his grip
or did it ever touch me