you are in the States or abroad ~ may you know that you are in our prayers at
this holiday time ~ and always ~ that you be safe and return home soon! Thank
you for serving in the military of the United States of America.
Major Bruce W. Lovely
Apologies to Clement Moore Who First Wrote the Story for His Children in 1822
also credit given to M/Sgt Noah Brazos Ross, RA18033195, a U.S. Army 18th Field
Artillery survivor of Utah Beach, France, Luxembourg, Belgium, Battle for the
Ardennes, Deutschland wrote "Daddy's Christmas" (Soldier's
Christmas)" as a Bonita, Montague County, Texas, high school exercise in
Twas the night before Christmas, he lived all
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.
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 far distant lands.
With medals and badges,
awards of all kind
A sober thought came through my mind.
For this house was different, so dark and dreary,
I knew I had found the home of a soldier, once I could see clearly.
I 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.
His face so gentle, his
room in such disorder,
Not how I pictured a United States soldier.
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 `round the world, the
children would play,
And grownups would celebrate on a bright Christmas day.
They all enjoyed freedom each month of the year,
Because of soldiers 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 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."
With that he rolled over
and 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 I covered this Soldier from his toes to his head.
And I put on his T-shirt of gray and black,
With an eagle and an Army patch embroidered on back.
And although it barely fit
me, I began to swell with pride,
And for a shining moment, I was United States Army deep inside.
I didn´t want to leave him on that cold dark night,
This guardian of honor so willing to fight.
soldier rolled over, whispered with a voice so clean and pure,
"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!
I wrote this poem for Christmas Eve 1993
while assigned to US Forces Korea - Lt Col Bruce Lovely,
USAF (Printed in the
Fort Leavenworth Lamp, 1995)