Who wrote this Christmas Poem




 
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December 10th, 2006  
UBIQUE
 

Topic: Who wrote this Christmas Poem


This is good, I've seen this four times before and I sure you blokes have probably seen it as well. Any idea who it is credited to?



T'WAS 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 HOME, 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 SOLDIER, ONCE I COULD SEE CLEARLY.

THE SOLDIER 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, AN AUSTRALIAN SOLDIER.

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 SOLDIERS, 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 SOLDIERS, LIKE THE ONE LYING HERE.

I COULDN'T HELP 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 SOLDIER 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 SOLDIER 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 SOLDIER ROLLED OVER, WITH A VOICE SOFT AND PURE, WHISPERED, "CARRY ON SANTA, ITS 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."
December 11th, 2006  
The Cooler King
 
I've heard several different versions of this poem and I've seen it attributed to serveral different people. The real author is Lance Corporal James M. Schmidt and here is the original version printed in Leatherneck magazine in 1991.


Quote:
Merry Christmas, My Friend

Twas the night before Christmas, he lived all alone,
In a one bedroom house made of plaster & stone.

I had come down the chimney, with presents to give
and to see just who in this home did live

As I looked all about, a strange sight I did see,
no tinsel, no presents, not even a tree.
No stocking by the fire, just boots filled with sand.
On the wall hung pictures of a far distant land.

With medals and badges, awards of all kind,
a sobering thought soon came to my mind.
For this house was different, unlike any I'd seen.
This was the home of a U.S. Marine.

I'd heard stories about them, I had to see more,
so I walked down the hall and pushed open the door.
And there he lay sleeping, silent, alone,
Curled up on the floor in his one-bedroom home.

He seemed so gentle, his face so serene,
Not how I pictured a U.S. Marine.
Was this the hero, of whom I’d just read?
Curled up in his poncho, a floor for his bed?

His head was clean-shaven, his weathered face tan.
I soon understood, this was more than a man.
For I realized the families that I saw that night,
owed their lives to these men, who were willing to fight.

Soon around the Nation, the children would play,
And grown-ups would celebrate on a bright Christmas day.
They all enjoyed freedom, each month and all year,
because of Marines like this one lying here.

I couldn’t help wonder how many lay alone,
on a cold Christmas Eve, in a land far from home.
Just the very thought brought a tear to my eye.
I dropped to my knees and I started to cry.

He must have awoken, for 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."

With that he rolled over, drifted off into sleep,
I couldn't control it, I continued to weep.

I watched him for hours, so silent and still.
I noticed he shivered from the cold night's chill.
So I took off my jacket, the one made of red,
and covered this Marine from his toes to his head.
Then I put on his T-shirt of scarlet and gold,
with an eagle, globe and anchor emblazoned so bold.
And although it barely fit me, I began to swell with pride,
and for one shining moment, I was Marine Corps deep inside.

I didn't want to leave him so quiet in the night,
this guardian of honor so willing to fight.
But half asleep he rolled over, and in a voice clean and pure,
said "Carry on, Santa, it's Christmas Day, all secure."
One look at my watch and I knew he was right,
Merry Christmas my friend, Semper Fi and goodnight.
Here's the straight dope: http://www.snopes.com/holidays/christmas/soldier.asp
December 12th, 2006  
UBIQUE
 
Thanks for that, I didn't think it was Australian as the reference to poncho and "My life is my God, my country, my Corps" doesn't fit with our kit or our outlook for want of a better word.

Cheers
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