Friday, June 24, 2005

Freedom is not free

Stirred up a little something when I posted about my Grampa Baker. Our families are now searching for photos and mementos. My oldest brother Steve offered this poem by my Grammy:

Armistice - And Irony

I can see them yet, as they marched away,
So debonair, so brave, so gay!
I can see them yet, as they turned to wave,
The smiles erased from their faces grave.
And as I stood there, turned to stone,
The sun's last glint from their rifles shone.

I can still see my Mother, with face so white
And my Father, standing so still,
Trying to think that all was right,
Trying to feel like it was God's will.
Yes, we all tried to be as brave as they,
As my husband and brother marched away.

After many a weary month and long
Came the news, more cheering than the happiest song.
The whistles were blowing, the bells were ringing.
Everywhere people were shouting and singing.
"The War is over at last" cried they,
And the sad old World became hysteric'ly gay.
We looked at each other through tears of joy
And Mother murmered softly, "My boy, my boy!".

Happy plans for their return we made.
I tremble even now, as these mem'ries fade.
"Killed in action", the telegram bore.
"Killed in action"; weary brain repeated o'er and o'er.
Yes, the bells were ringing,
They should have tolled!
The sound of bells will turn me faint and cold
My brother had died the day before.

Josephine Abby Lamb Baker

Hurts my heart to think how they felt. I often heard about someone who was lost at the time of the Armistice. Remember, back then it took a very long time for any information to be routed around. From joy to mourning. Brings back the fears we felt during the Viet Nam war when Steve himself was in the Service. Thanks for your contribution, Steve. And did anyone ever thank you for serving your country? Let me now. On record.

Thanks. We appreciate it.

Little Pond


Anonymous said...

Very touching. I'm tearing up now, too. Send my thanks along to brother Steve for his goodness and bravery and honor.


Darlene said...

This poem literally sent chills throughout my body. To be able to voice, to put into words, those feelings that we can all relate to. I personally want to dedicate this to every single person who has ever, is now, or will be serving in any branch of our armed forces.

Whether or not whoever reads this believes we should be fighting for freedom, in our own or another country's, you have to appreciate that these people are selflessly putting their lives on the line so they can help others. So whatever "politics" people believe in, we all owe them our respect.