Veteran’s Day

With the coming of Veteran’s Day, I thought I’d post this poem. I don’t know the author of it. I liked it and wanted to share it.

He was getting old and paunchy
And his hair was falling fast,
And he sat around the Legion,
Telling stories of the past.

Of a war that he once fought in
And the deeds that he had done,
In his exploits with his buddies;
They were heroes, every one.

And ‘tho sometimes to his neighbors
His tales became a joke,
All his buddies listened quietly
For they knew where of he spoke.

But we’ll hear his tales no longer,
For ol’ Joe has passed away,
And the world’s a little poorer
For a Veteran died today.

He won’t be mourned by many,
Just his children and his wife.
For he lived an ordinary,
Very quiet sort of life.

He held a job and raised a family,
Going quietly on his way;
And the world won’t note his passing,
‘Tho a Veteran died today.

When politicians leave this earth,
Their bodies lie in state,
While thousands note their passing,
And proclaim that they were great.

Papers tell of their life stories
From the time that they were young,
But the passing of a Veteran
Goes unnoticed, and unsung.

Is the greatest contribution
To the welfare of our land,
Some jerk who breaks his promise
And cons his fellow man?

Or the ordinary fellow
Who in times of war and strife,
Goes off to serve his country
And offers up his life?

The politician’s stipend
And the style in which he lives,
Are often disproportionate,
To the service that he gives.

While the ordinary Veteran,
Who offered up his all,
Is paid off with a medal
And perhaps a pension, small.

It is not the politicians
With their compromise and ploys,
Who won for us the freedom
That our country now enjoys.

Should you find yourself in danger,
With your enemies at hand,
Would you really want some cop-out,
With his ever-waffling stand?

Or would you want a Veteran
His home, his country, his kin,
Just a common Veteran,
Who would fight until the end.

He was just a common Veteran,
And his ranks are growing thin,
But his presence should remind us
We may need his likes again.

For when countries are in conflict,
We find the Veteran’s part,
Is to clean up all the troubles
That the politicians start.

If we cannot do him honor
While he’s here to hear the praise,
Then at least let’s give him homage
At the ending of his days.

Perhaps just a simple headline
In the paper that might say:

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  1. Lo, this poem really hits home with me. My father was a veteran of WWII and Korea and this was one of his proudest achievements, other than his family. I too am a veteran of the Viet Nam Era. Thanks for posting and for telling it like it is. MJ (I may steal this. LOL)

  2. Lo, in researching I found that Brenda Eidson read this poem in honor of her husband, Curtis (I/3/5), Doc Ron Parlee (senior Corpsman for I/3/5), and for their fellow Marines and Corpsmen, at the 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines Reunion 2001 in La Grange, Georgia, May 17-20. Thanks again for posting it.

  3. I have always loved this poem lo.I have it somewhere deep in the bowels of my Laptop. I never knew my Parents but deep down somewhere in side i have always dreamed my dad was a soldier. I have no idea why i wanted him to be one but i did. I support the Veteran’s and serving soldiers and i always will. Thank you for posting the poem. :'(

  4. Awesome post Lo! OMG, made me cry at my desk. It is profoundly sad that it is indeed so true. Thank you for sharing it with us. The world, not just our country, needs a reminder. Helen xxxxxxxx

  5. Thank you for posting this Lo. Our vets are the true hero of humanity.
    Most have no clue the true sacrifice they and their families endure. Not only on Veteran’s Day should we honor them but every day.

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