One Toy Soldier
Little toy soldiers are all put away
Training is over for this time of day.
Where do these little boys go now to play?
Away from their home to die in the fray.
Little toy weapons are no longer there
But boxed in attics by mothers with care--
Where keepsakes still hold a lock of his hair--
While rockets and missles challenge his fare.
Little toy bad guys and little toy good
Haze in the distance when misunderstood.
Where fall the lilies on long crates of wood
And each gave their all--as good soldiers should...
Little toy soldiers are coming back home...
Mothers are weeping, laments all alone
Where flags lie folded--the gift of Shalom...
As the long box is lowered...'neath the loam
One little toy soldier is placed on the top
Remembering All--so that None be Forgot.
Slowly breathing with a steady beat
Boots are crunching you feel the heat
You inch on closer, looking around
Watching your friends make not a sound
You have been told to kill this man
A threat he is to freedoms plan
Hold up your rifle, take careful aim
Let go of the guilt your not to blame
Orders you follow a good soldier you are
Try not to think the size of the scar
That this order will bring deep in your soul
We raise the flag on top of this soldier's hole
I will give support, I will lend my hand
So you can brother, continue to stand
To fight for the freedoms of people everywhere
Down your rifle I, with you, shall stare
We would get used to the heat
If not for the body-armor.
We could always taste the dust
Which made it seem even warmer.
Ballistic sunglasses blocked the glare,
But didn't keep out the sweat.
The smell of raw sewage and rot
We would never soon forget.
I assumed the ground would be sandy,
But it was really all silt and clay.
There was so much fouled standing water
After their annual rainy season days.
The only time I wasn't over-heating
Was in January's rains in Mosul, Iraq.
After wading through so much filth,
I'm happy to never, ever, ever go back.
Oh Father I give to you my wife who gave her son,
he is one of two, the other life never really begun.
She held him as baby and made his lunch as a boy,
through strife and struggle he still is her pride and joy.
She loves him more than she ever said,
but each and everyday she tucked him into bed.
Watch over him father as he left to serve with much pride,
but please be with my wife who is struggling deep inside.
She taught him well and this will serve as a strong foundation,
but he needs you to perform the duties requested by this nation.
Give him the strength he needs for the tasks set before him,
for my wife awaits to hold him and see him laugh again.
This I humble pray as her husband...
Edward J Ebbs - Winter 2007
Dad never knew his father. That soldier died in a war.
All Dad heard was brief stories of the man that went before.
Grandma had some pictures and some medals on a wall.
But Dad never knew his father which was what mattered most of all
I’ve done some family history, and seen the ship’s manifest.
I’ve heard again the story of the good ship Lafayette--
How Grandma and her children searched the waves for periscopes,
Knowing that one torpedo could blow away all of their hopes.
This could have been in any war. Soldiers die and families flee.
But this was the family story that was handed down to me.
It started in old England, then to an immigration line:
A 3-year-old at Ellis Island, in July 1939.
They fled their burning country, to be called “war refugees”.
With help from an old uncle and a kind community,
Grandma made a new start here in the land of liberty.
They learned that Grandpa was killed in ‘44 in Italy.
I found online the letter, that my Grandma didn’t see,
About how the Sergeant-Major’s infantry company
Was caught out in the open by Wehrmacht artillery.
The letter said he didn’t suffer. Was he really killed instantly?
I never knew my Grandpa, though I was named after him.
Though I served a different flag, I was a soldier like him.
I’ve seen my father’s scrapbook, and Grandpa’s medals on the wall.
But I never knew my Grandpa which was what mattered most of all.
Soldier boy, oh soldier boy
Why don't you hide up those tears?
Hold in your mind those nail- biting fears
March till you drop, sing the marching song
Even though, for home you heart it does long
Don't cry no don't cry
Always care to try
Hold up your head
For death cannot tread
Oh soldier boy, oh soldier boy
Why don't you hide up those tears
For this night your safe, soften those fears
Lay down so quiet and hum your wholesome song
Hum how much for home your heart does long
Don't cry no don't cry
Always care to try
Hold up your head
For death cannot tread
Now soldier boy, now soldier boy
Could this be the morn when death does appear?
And I know it will be hard to hide up that fear
Don't let him in, it's just the funeral song
Pretty soon now for home, your heart will not long
You will not cry, oh do not cry
For you always cared to try
Soldier boy hold up that head
For now you layed on eternities bed
They say my duty is to protect the lands
Defend it! Even with your bare hands
I train so hard in the sun and rain
To become stronger, something to gain
Task after task it gets tougher
My heart and skin become rougher
Learning how to become a predator
I was chosen for this, not just a visitor
Aim for your target's heart
Kill him, find another one, restart
Gradually, I lose all emotion
Combat is my only devotion
Suddenly terrors outbreak
Our country is at stake
What are we going to do?
Start a war, come soldier, you!
Surely, the fight begins
But who are the villains?
I didn't have time to think
These dots to link
I was at war
Fighting like a wild boar
Killing as many enemies as I can
This terror, I will surely ban
An enemy tries to run
I kill him just for fun
Wait! Am I enjoying this?
What is this unholy bliss?
Feeling delight by making others suffer
What is it that I offer?
Wasn't it peace and tranquility?
How come I'm committing infidelity?
I look around, the seeds of hell
Have all come out of their shell
Me and my fleet are shouldering
Countless cases of rape
Committed by the heroes wearing the cape
The land we were supposed to protect
With corruption, it, We did infect
Following orders from above
All our humanity we had to shove
Why didn't we ask first?
Why, for blood, did we thirst?
The enemy I killed was just a kid
Going back to a place where he hid
To the world, I'm a hero
Personally, I'm just a zero
My humanity is back
Taking me to the right track
But I'm chained to my regret
A shame that I can't neglect
Although, I did quit the war
It’s not enough to pay back the score
I got a soul, yet I'm just a boulder
I am the honorable soldier
Scars, that's what endear
to a grenadier.
An aspiring marine
is assuredly green,
but he's not as much green
as a drowned marine.
From: Governor Silva, Lucias Flavius
To: Commander, Legio X "Fretensis"
The Judean slaves finally finished the assault ramp.
Order the centurions to roust the legionnaires from each camp.
Give each of your legionnaires extra water and a double ration,
Then assemble the squares and set them in motion.
The last of the defenders are cowering behind the wall.
Well before nightfall, I should expect Masada fortress to fall.
Among Eleazar Ben Yair's Zealots are Sicarii assassins,
So ensure that each prisoner taken is searched for hidden weapons.
Capture as many as you can of them to be sold for slaves;
But toss all their dead off the cliffs--don't bother digging graves.
It may still be awhile before the Tenth Legions rotates back home;
When that day comes, I'm sure Vespasian will honor you all before Rome.
Copyright © 2015
Edited: 7/8 - 7:48pm
Symbols of Southern and Northern pride
on both sides who lived and died
An American story
a clash for glory
Whose glory in this land?
that native man?
he was already here
and faced a new fear
for him, who stands and cheer?
Another who didn't ask to come
whipped and chained by some
Flag of Dixie became a motivator for hate
years beyond those historic dates
once again the South wrought this debate
This time it was nine
who will it be next time?
Those scars, those scars - are not forgotten
left many of our Americans alone and frighten
Oppression and terrorism aren't new
it has always been started by a few-
from murder to rape
hardly any one escape
Now, America's Old Glory flies
standing guard over those cries
Ole confederacy ideas still wants to divide
by creating the Klan, they tried
to destroy peace while others were denied
"We The People," aren't a nation for a few
if our Armed Forces fight for me and you
So, lets not disgrace this divined nation
with a flag that embraces segregation
It's time to mend and get on beyond our past
or their Klan will continue to march in mass
The Star Spangled Banner, of Stars and Stripes
our enemies foreign and domestic love to fight-
this flag, a symbol of freedom against who might
"We The People" under this Banner, are one
from numerous wars hard fought, and won
Like that brave American Eagle that flies high
only one starred flag of Glory should wave him by
A Bit of Both: Boy Soldier
Life a bit of both
I do hate or loath;
For, pursuit of boon
Turned me a goon.
I grew in need
Of garb and feed
In want I lived
In pain I thrived.
Scarce was I praised
In pain was raised
Deprived of Love
I ran to the grove.
I longed for Peace
I missed e’en a piece
Gun; support stuff
Gun tang my snuff.
Do I know father
Do I know mother
I never wore a napkin
Real hide my skin-
Crawling from womb
Direct to the tomb!
Do I know Sister
Besides all so sinister
Brother is this lad
Friend in the fad
If going Home I mull
He’ll break my skull
• Compelling or luring children to join “adult wars” is a Social Anathema all must abhor.
06th Nov’ 2013
Who fought Alone
Untimely death, why come so near
To taunt my soul with mortal fear.
I cannot go - so unprepared
So full of life and yet so scared.
The world’s held nothing for me but strife
And yet, O lord, I cling to life.
A fatherless boy in a Gorbals slum
Who owes his being to a tot of rum.
The industrial school with its air of blame
The endless fight to remove its shame
And then the slump with its hunger march
That swept its way to Admiralty Arch.
The years of depression without any hope
With nothing to do but sit and mope
The look of misery in the children’s eyes
With nothing to offer but bread and lies.
The relief of war and work at last,
A future for those who had no past.
Must I lose it now, with scarce a taste
Of the honeyed joy in the desert waste.
Must the death knell come as my life began
To a forgotten link in the chain Of Man
The smartest cavaliers at the command 'To horse!'
contrive to be in time for both a horse and whores.
Here we go men! Into the valiant fight!
Where men become men and cowards flee our sight!
Iron will clang and feet will race;
As bullets are thrown at a frightening pace!
Men will be thrown and cries will be heard –
As we fly our way through the smoke like a bird.
But in the end we shall acquire our victory;
And together we’ll go down in the great epic of history!
One Month Down
I wake up when he calls in the middle of the night,
He says for our country that he’s proud to fight.
I close my eyes and I push away worry,
I talk about things that are cuddly and furry.
I won’t relax until I can hold him again,
But if anyone can do this, it’s got to be him.
I’ll always hope and I’ll always pray
That my favorite soldier comes home someday.
I’m honored to support him and proud to be his wife,
He’s my everything. He’s my whole life.
It’s hard to imagine that he’s already left,
And taken my heart, now that’s petty theft.
My soldier inspires me to care and to love,
And I keep praying to our Lord up above
For his safe return and a happy marriage,
And someday a mini-soldier in a blue and white carriage.
I miss the way he rests his hand on my face,
I’m hopelessly clumsy but he only sees grace.
I can’t cook, but he doesn’t care
Because when we order take-out, I always share!
I am very fortunate to be with him,
Because he gives to our country again and again.
I’m never alone because he’s close to my heart,
On earth or in heaven, we’re never apart.
I wonder what my soldier is doing right now,
And if he’s sad or scared or anxious somehow.
I love him more today than ever before,
And tomorrow I’ll love my soldier just that much more.
Please come back to me, soldier, safe and sound.
Eight more months until you’re homeward-bound.
You are strong and bold...
Ageless stories go untold...
Our soldiers will come home...
To escape wars growing dome...
We pray, you be strong...
For our Nations freedom is not wrong
When you walked away I said I wouln't cry
but I almost did when you said goodbye
when you did come home you weren't very well
you said you weren't hurting but you were I could tell
I stayed by your side as your breath slid away
whispered to you on your final day
as you took your last breath you told me don't cry
no matter what happens this isn't goodbye
you now have peace my soldier
lay at rest
because you my american soldier were one of the best
as time goes past as you asked I don't cry
I kept my word because you promised this wasn't goodbye.
I hear a mother softly cry
As she sings a war-born lullaby.
The song of a father who went away,
To give freedom one more day.
He promised that he would return,
Return from watching evil burn.
It was a promise he could not keep,
As now he sleeps an eternal sleep.
He gave his life so his child could see,
A land of freedom and liberty.
His body now rests beneath green grass,
His medals and picture behind clear glass.
His soul, however, is not gone.
His ideas and dreams are carried on.
She sings the song of war’s high cost.
She sings the song of freedom not lost.
She sings of a father’s sacrifice,
For his country and family he gave his life.
A soldier dies for the sake of his country
He lived in a land where we’re all meant to be free
Bleeding from his wounds he speaks before his life is done
“Not every soldier goes to heaven and I fear that I am one”
“I fought to save the innocent from suffering”
“I fought so hard but I couldn’t save them from dying”
He gasps as he chokes on his tears
His mind is but a fleeting memory thinking of long forgotten years
“My parents said to grow up and live strong”
“If they could see me now, would they hold me before I’m gone?”
“Or have I crossed the line between man and beast?”
“Oh Lord I beg of you, let this pain cease”
“Or has God forsaken man?”
“Does it matter? I’ve already fought and died for this land”
Hovering between life and death
He speaks with his last breath
“Is God watching now, have I done well?”
“If not heaven, where else can I go? For I’ve already seen hell”
The Soldier’s return
David is coming,
The time’s drawing near
Long have I wished for
The end of the year.
This I have known
Now all is ended
For he’s coming home.
Watching the clock
Awaiting the moment
His ship will dock.
My arms are aching
Him to enfold
Warm are my thoughts
As I wait in the cold.
Scanning each face
As thousands of soldiers
Invade every place.
At last, he is here!
Praise heavens above,
I find in his arms
The peace of true love.
He looked at his orders and left out a long sigh
Raised his eyes to the clouds and asked, "Why, God, Why?"
The toughest assignment of a long career
A message to be taken to a family held dear.
He arrived at the station and began his walk down the street
There was a feeling of anguish he could not defeat
He found the home he was looking for
Took a deep breath and walked to the door
The man's face became filled with fear
He knew in his heart why the soldier was here.
As he delivered the message that their only son had died
"Oh no, not my baby, not my baby," the young mother cried.
There was a look of despair in the father's sad eyes
And undeniable grief in the young mother's cries
Their son had been butchered, not killed in the field
There would be no viewing, the casket was sealed.
We will not retaliate as the lone church bell tolls
Our leaders don't want to look bad in the polls
There is a feeling of anger that through my body runs
As politicians sharpen their image with the blood of our sons.
At night, alone, he feels the tears fill his eyes
The soldier is haunted by the young mother's cries
The war rages on and he answers the call
The battle continues and more soldiers fall.
We are in another Vietnam but this time it is not the war splitting the country. It
is the apathy of the American people. We need to care. We need to recapture our
patriotism and pride. We are watching our children die while the administration
bows down and worships the oil companies. We watch as people continually
violate our rights by abusing the first amendment. We are fighting a war for five
years that should have lasted five weeks. I'll fight to defend my country, but I'll be
damned if I'll fight so Shell and Exxon can get their hands on Iraqi oil.
Soldier Turned Into a Statue
Saw some soldier turned into a statue,
Who was brave in battle that is true;
Around his waste, he wore a belt
And on one knee he now knelt.
With hand had been wiping his brow;
How he survived, we wondered how
After going in to bring last body out;
Saving souls is what war is all about.
Body had part of it's leg missing
And death he had just felt it kissing;
Last time we looked he was still alive;
So fortunate for him that he did survive.