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It takes two to make a tear

It takes two to make a tear 

It’s Christmastime so no more killing now!
Let’s get together, sing some carols here.
In no man’s land, we’re brothers for today.
A merry Christmas, season’s greetings, mate.
Und frohliche weihnachten to you, my friend.
Oh, stille nacht, holy night: a lovely sound.

I’ll trade some brandy for your schnapps, old mate.
Und bratwurst for your bully beef, my friend!
It’s nice to know you, as we’re friendly now.
I wish that you could meet my folk today.
Your German language is a pleasant sound.
Und Englisch klingt gut, now it’s spoken here.

It’s good when laughter is the only sound!
A cigarette? Und zigarette, my friend?
It’s good to smoke it either way right now.
I’d take you home to meet my folks, so here’s
A photo of my wife and children, mate.
I wish that I could be with them today.

We’ll have a game of football, Max, my mate:
A Christmas friendly five a side today!
Ah, football das ist gut, my friend.
And only friendly rivalry from now.
With Cheers, instead of cries: such happy sounds!
And No Man’s land’s a perfect pitch right here.

I wish I had some gifts to offer here.
Oh, what I wouldn’t give for hankies now.
Let’s sing again; it’s such a jolly sound.
It’s snowing; friendship keeps us warm today.
You’re welcome to mein mantel, Bob, my friend.
I never thought I’d wear your coat, Max, mate.

The world is now a better place today.
I think we’ll stay gute freunde, do you, my friend?
Of course we’ll be good pals from now on, mate.
I couldn’t shoot at German soldiers now.
We’ll tell them straight that we’re all friendly here -
And no more fighting in the world sounds sound!

They say we’re enemies again, old mate.
Ja, weihnachten war gestern, Bob my friend.
Forgive me if I take your life today…


*In 1914, the German and English troops had a ceasefire at Christmas.

I think my German words are correct, but apologies if not!

Copyright © | Year Posted 2011




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Date: 7/12/2011 7:00:00 PM
Congratulations on your win with this fun narrative - at least until the end! Very cool how you interwove the german words and history together in this piece. was this challenging?
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Date: 7/12/2011 11:23:00 AM
I definitely remember this very touching write, Jack :) Congrats on your win :D
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Date: 7/12/2011 11:15:00 AM
Jack, there was a movie made about this ceasefire and some German and American soldiers ended up spending the night in a widow's cabin. Although there was some tension at first, they became friends. How hard it must have been to go back to war after the ceasefire. Congratulations on your win in PD's contest! Love, Carolyn
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Date: 7/12/2011 5:07:00 AM
Congratulations Jack on your win in the "Assignment" contest of P.D. Love, Carol
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Date: 7/12/2011 5:07:00 AM
Congrats Jack on your wonderful amazing win with this dazzling assignment .. kudos meeting the challenge in this contest my friend.. enjoy with luv.
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Date: 7/12/2011 4:10:00 AM
My congratulations on this win in the contest of p.d., jack
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Date: 7/12/2011 12:53:00 AM
hi Jack,,Congratulations on a poem well done! Thank you for supporting my contest~ I sure enjoyed every entry,..p.d.
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Date: 7/12/2011 12:52:00 AM
swinging cheers to you for the amazing award, jack!! :) huggs
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Date: 6/30/2011 7:47:00 AM
This is just too sad but I know that it's true to the way it really happened. People who didn't eally want to be there killing each other when they really didn't want to but in war if you don't kill then you get killed. So sad. God Bless my friend, JB
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Date: 6/28/2011 7:49:00 AM
oh Jack hope nothing serious with Sue luv.. we will put her on our prayer chain line at Church for healing and recovery .. keep me updated about her op.. luv.. things happen in life that make us sad and confused .. writing expresses it ..so u will create when ready on this experience luv.. thankxx for reading and commenting so sweetly on my body of poetry luv..appreciate..
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Date: 6/23/2011 1:19:00 AM
oh shucks, what a touching write this is, Jack-- and you know what? that last line gave me the chills-- and made me sad as well-- wow I think you did wonderfully with you sestina! Enjoyed reading this...:)
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Date: 6/22/2011 11:10:00 PM
oh, WOW< what a splendid job you did with this!! I was thinking of that story from WW I as I read this. So you accomplished a great feat. You brought that well known episode to life. Just awesome.
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Date: 6/22/2011 3:00:00 PM
so happy u enjoyed my VISTA write Jack.. it came so unprepared while we were driving today through a great little seashore town of Cape May .. lush green and lovely flowers and Nature in full splendor.. so out came words..as u know..this is the way it happens luv..
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Date: 6/21/2011 4:58:00 PM
I am sure that this one took some effort..Enjoyed reading..Thanks for your selecting my work to be in the winners' circle in the contest that you and Carolyn sponsored together..I know that it is not easy to chose winners from all the great entries that are in the competition...Sara
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Date: 6/21/2011 1:14:00 PM
Dear Jack, please don't worry about offering congratulations. I've only posted one poem since our contest started (last night AFTER the results were posted). People who haven't judged don't know how time consuming the process is, but now you know. Love you, Carolyn
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Date: 6/21/2011 12:45:00 PM
oh, now i'm in a christmas moment... thanks john for reviewing my " ghost" contest piece.. i love what i wrote and so did a lot! splendid work you have here..:) hugggs, nette
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Date: 6/21/2011 10:44:00 AM
I don't think that could happen today with their type of warfare but It is a great pem. Thank you as well as Corlolyn for my placement in your ghost contest. That was fun. Love, Joyce
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Date: 6/21/2011 9:22:00 AM
oh Jack am so happy to have been chosen by u and CD too.. such an honor in a wonderful contest... am very appreciative and hope u enjoyed the contest process and do one on your own soon luv... extend my thankxx to CD also luv.. it was a special write my friend.. kudos to u both for a fantastic challenge ...
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Date: 6/20/2011 3:52:00 PM
Brave man doing this form [hint any word four letters or longer in a title gets capitalized ;)] The layout pattern of your end words is incorrect SOUP Mail! Light & Love
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Date: 6/20/2011 3:40:00 PM
What an intense written poem, amazing Jack, and I want to thank you so much for my placement in your Ghost contest, I am very honored ~~
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Date: 6/19/2011 8:44:00 AM
thankxx Jack for enjoying my tribute poem to my Daddy on Father's Day.. I consider it a 'gem' so entered it into Chris's contest just now.. he was a special guy and my Mom a special gal.. what else can a "Sweetheart" ask for? I already have my special guy..so it's all good luv..
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Date: 6/19/2011 8:36:00 AM
That ceasefire must have provided a much needed break during the war, Jack. Although I don't speak German, I've learned some from Gert and could easily translate your words. What an irony that after this one day of peace, the fighting had to begin again. Excellent write and you chose a very original theme! Love, Carolyn
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Date: 6/19/2011 5:46:00 AM
Inspiration has filled the pages of poetry over this weekend here at PoetrySoup. I am happy to have been able to read your poetry here today Jack. Have a wonderful Sunday I will be back soon to read more. Love, Carol
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Date: 6/18/2011 4:18:00 PM
i have read about that, it should show us that if we can stop fighting at Christmas time, why not do it for good. there was a movie called Silent Night during world war 2 this german lady had the germans and these americanas put down their guns until after Christimas.
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Date: 6/18/2011 3:14:00 PM
Such strength in your writing.Great stuff.....Sincerely...
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