Sunday, 5 December 2010

'Twas The Night Before Christmas

I received this poem in an email with the following explanation:
"This poem was written by a Peacekeeping soldier stationed overseas. The following is his request. Would you do me the kind favour of sending this to as many people as you can? Christmas will be coming soon and some credit is due to all of the 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.  Please, do your small part to plant this small seed."
That may be true, or it may be one of those chain mails that can be so annoying but the sentiment remains the same and so I'm sharing it with you today. 

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 disorder,
Not how I pictured,
A true British soldier. 
Was this the hero,
Of whom I'd just read?
Curled up on a poncho,
The floor for a bed? 
I realised 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 grown ups 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 night's cold chill. 
I did not want to leave,
On that cold dark night,
This guardian of honour,
So willing to fight. 
Then the soldier rolled over,
With a voice soft and pure,
Whispered, "Carry on Santa,
It's 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."



  1. This is such an emotive poem that brings me to tears every time I read it. Thanks for reminding us all to remember our Service men and women who will be far away from home this Christmas.

  2. Thanks for sharing Lis. It's sad but sometimes we need to be reminded of other peoples sacrifices for us.

  3. Peace on Earth and goodwill to all men, a simple christmas wish.....


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hugs, Lis x