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A Goddess Of Liberty


OUR SONS AT WAR

by,
Lee McCollum
1940


WE ADVANCE AGAIN

ALL about us is every evidence of a people who had led a peaceful, contented life. Small farms, no longer tilled by the plow. What had once been homes were now shells with walls standing as sentinels guarding the remains.

Town after town we have passed through in this war shattered area. Occasionally we meet French peasants, usually the old ones. They seemed resigned to their fate. In one town they called us "L' Anglaise," mistaking us for English soldiers. When we tell them that we are Americans, they look puzzled and don't seem to understand. As we advance steadily to the far frontier the few peasants we had been seeing are now conspicuous by their absence. We can hear the deep throaty booming of heavy guns, then sharper notes of lighter artillery as we get closer to the front lines.

Near the town of St. Juvin I saw a goat. "Funny," I thought, "straying all by itself. Bleating, wondering where his master is. And we not much better off. Just beaded for the lines with no master to guide us."

Tonight we billeted in a dirty pen of a barn. I am too exhausted to examine the place they told me to bunk down. I can smell the foulness of it, though. Tired as I am, I sleep through it all. It is early morning. We are told to make it on the "double-quick," that hot coffee is waiting.

"Hot coffee!" God, how long since I've tasted anything hot! We rush to the portable kitchens that had overtaken us during the night. The aroma has been taunting me for five minutes as I patiently wait my turn. Eagerly I extend my aluminum cup for some of the precious black golden liquid.

Just as I got the coffee to my lips the bugler sounded a hasty warning. Several enemy planes appeared overhead from out of nowhere. We ran for cover. Nothing happened. The planes stayed but a moment, then faded away. We could see them signaling their artillery. Hastily we started to move forward. I lost half my precious coffee and scorched my throat with the other half.

We had advanced but a short distance to another small village when we met heavy opposition from the enemy entrenched there. Quickly we took cover behind buildings and in an old dilapidated trench.

Watching the enemy ducking in and out of the wrecks of buildings that had once been homes, I could not help thinking what those houses must have meant before fate found us here. The hopes and the dreams that had built them-the sense of security the four walls gave. Yet here we were, a ruthless bunch of madmen, shooting down the remains of what bad once been homes.

VISIONS

In early morn when day is born,
Night shadows start to fade,
I gaze upon a land shell-torn,
The havoc war has made.
And as the mist begins to lift,
Dim lines of a home I see,
Then by the fate's sardonic twist,
A vision comes to me.

Instead of walls that barely stand,
Against the skylines drear,
Quaint cozy rooms I see instead,
And all that life holds dear,
As plainly as 'twere painted there
A family group I see,
Gathered around a fireside,
A child on a father's knee.

He is telling oft told tales of old,
Their childish love to endear,
A wondrous fairyland picture he paints,
With a master's stroke that is clear.
Then comes the end of this simple tale,
Rewarded by cries of delight,
Lovelight glows in their trusting eyes,
As in turn they kiss him goodnight.

Off to bed a-romping they go,
Climbing queer turning stairs,
By a crude old home-made bed
They kneel to say their prayers.
"Bless mama and papa, and give
Peace on Earth, goodwill to men;
Then as the mother tucks them in,
One shyly says, "Amen."

But now the vision fades away,
Once more by the will of fate,
From barren walls comes a war-dog,
Turning loving thoughts to hate.
From my right comes the sound of a "Browning,"
That makes my blood run chill,
My vision is gone, I stand alone ...
My business up here is to kill.

NIGHT FLARES AND RAIDING

FLARES were the bane of every night raider's life in order to get information of enemy activities it was necessary to raid their lines occasionally, capture prisoners, and get information from them. It was common practice, both with the enemy and with our troops.

Raiding parties were never held on moonlight nights. In fact, I remember but few such nights in France. We usually waited for the wettest and blackest night we could find. Then a party of three of four, sometimes six, were detailed to make the raid.

It was dangerous because we were going deep into enemy territory to capture and bring back some of their men alive. Between our lines and the enemy was a strip of land called No-Man's-Land. This had to be crossed before we could reach the enemy lines. Usually that land was well protected from invasion by barbwire entanglements and small trip wires. If we were on old territory fought over before, we would quite often find weatherworn and dilapidated trenches along with the wire.

The only way the enemy could protect himself on dark nights was to keep No-Man's-Land lit up as much as possible. This he did by shooting flares into the skies at intervals. Raids were usually held in the dead of the night. On either the enemy's side or our own, the front lines were guarded by a scattering of a few men. These men were guards. Usually they were expert marksmen or machine-gunners, which made the invasion of raiding parties all the more dangerous.

When a raiding party saw a flare go skyward, they would "freeze," or stiffen and hold their position rigidly, just like a trained hunting dog pointing a bird. Immobility was our best protection. Rigid as a statue, we had a chance of being mistaken for some of the shell shattered trees and stumps scattered over No-Man's-Land. If you made many moves you were sure to draw the attention of some enemy marksman.

The flares were just about like our home fireworks. Instead of a variety of colors they usually cast off a sickly blue-white and sometimes yellow light. They would hang poised in the air for a few seconds, then gradually fade out. The minute a flare was shot into the air you would hear the "tat-tat-tat" of machine guns. Then came the zing of sharpshooters' lead, searching human targets in No-Man's-Land.

The use of flares was a most effective protection, practiced by both sides. The sound of the machine guns is just like the cornpressed-air riveter you hear on a steel construction job.

No one thing outside of air raids could keep your heart jumping and your mind on edge, like duty on a raiding party in the deep black gloom of night.

THE FLARE

Your heart is all a-jumping and your nerves are all a-chill,
When you start to go a-raiding on a night that's dark and still;
You dare not speak in whispers, and you dare not make a sound,
When you go a-sneaking, creeping, o'er that cold war-blasted ground.

When Jerry shoots his star-shells in that war-weird night,
You are a mark for snipers shooting, your heart is filled with fright;
You lay stock-still and breathless and you pray you'll not be shot,
When his blue-white flare lights up the sky you wait for - God knows what.

Throughout a night that-is sometimes dim and sometimes lit by flare,
Through an endless age in No-Man's-Land you crawl and pray and swear;
If you live to see the dawn again you will know you learned "Out There,"
The thing that put real fear in you was Jerry's blue-white flare.

IT'S A LOUSY ARMY AT THE BEST

EVERYBODY in this man's army is getting fed up with army life. The chow is nothing to brag about. Before we hit the lines we thought it was tough, but now that we're in the lines we know that it was AAA food we had been served. Now that we are existing on dried bully beef and hard tack that pulls all the fillings from your teeth, we can appreciate what we used to grumble about. But at that it is better than an empty belly so most of us have learned to quit grumbling about the food. A certain pal of mine, Dick Coe, was always complaining about the food but today he floored me when he started his complaint against the army. Here was what was on his mind. I am the champion fall guy for these groaners.

"Without a question, Mae, this is the lousiest army I was ever in. And the worst part of it is these damn greybacks. The way they breed and multiply on a soldier beats all hell.

"Only yesterday I 'read my shirt.' Took it off and peeled to the skin. Then sat in a raw, damp wind just for the privilege of getting rid of these pests. Cleaned off every last one of them, and went through my shirt and tunic. Must have been a million eggs in the seams. Even went over my cap and leggings. It took three whole hours, Mac. When I finished I would have sworn I was the cleanest man in the A.E.F.

"Here it is less than twelve hours after, and I am alive with the crawly pests again. Wonder what it

would seem like to have a nice clean bath? To have clean underwear to crawl into? And socks that weren't rotting on your feet. And shoes that you could get into without a crowbar, and that you could lift with one hand.

,,I had all those things once. When? A thousand years ago, I guess. Remember, Mac, when we joined up? Maybe that was the time. Remember all those medals we were going to win? Then come home and show off? Knock our girls for a loop? Remember that, Mac?"

"We never thought about greybacks then, did we? Cooties, some calls them. Either way they are a pain in the neck to me. I'd like to split everyone of their cute little throats with the hot point of a razor blade. Which reminds me, I even dug them out of my hair yesterday, and one or two loose ones out of this nice red beard I am wearing.

"Wouldn't my girl think I was a cute little hero if she could see me now? Dammit, Mac, I can't stand it any longer. I am going to sit down in this damn French mud and 'read my shirt again. War or no war. I am going to get rid of these damn cooties."

COOTIES

When you are standing at attention,
And cooties bite and scratch below,
And your lousy captain bawls you out,
Ain't it bell?-Well I'll say so.

Have you ever had that itchy troop
Doing squads both East and West,
Across your tired shoulders
And underneath your vest?

Or in your helmet-sweated hair,
Or on your pain-racked shins,
The way those devils pinch and bite,
Is a climax to war's sins.

In the "lines" big generals bad them,
Every captain raised his share,

But there was plenty hell a-popping,
When a "buck" had one to spare.

You can have my flock of grey ones,
For I sure have had my fill,
And if Napoleon started this,
He's the bird I'd like to kill.

A SNIPER'S DUTY

I HAVE tried to avoid doing sniper's duty, first at camp, then in the lines. The sergeant told the captain I was a good shot. That's what comes from being raised on a ranch, spending half your time with a rifle in your hand. I didn't mind hunting then, but this is different. Or is it? After all, a life is a life - even to a dumb animal. I vow to God on high, if I am spared to come through this alive I will never fire another rifle.

I don't like this business of being hidden, lying in wait for the sight of the enemy. With these high powered rifles and telescopic sights, what chance would they have? A man is not like an animal, that can sense
danger by the powers it possesses. He cannot smell danger with the shifting of the wind. He can only guess at it, and usually he guesses wrong.

The enemy we are fighting seems to be the same as we, except that they speak another language. I notice that when we capture them there seems to be no hatred on their part - or on ours. We exchange one thought more than any other, "What are we fighting one another for, you and IF' Left alone, the average man would never think of war.

Guided by the power-crazed mind of autocrats of royal blood, or the commoner who sits in high position, we are drawn into war like puppets on a string. Puppets cannot speak their minds, not wooden puppets at least. They are managed by the hand of man pulling strings. Human puppets can speak their mind, but seldom do. Like puppets, they too are pulled on strings. Only the strings are made of words by the scant few ... words that become "hinges of death" when the puppets march to war.

These thoughts keep running through my mind as I lay here high up on the hillside, on this hidden outpost. With a high power rifle in my hand. Waiting. Waiting . . . for an enemy to come up that path which lies far below me in the valley.

My eyes are dizzy from steadily watching one spot. The dense underbrush seems to rustle in the breeze. Is it a false alarm? Or is it an enemy coming through the lines. Finally I am sure. I see a greyclad figure below me. He moves cautiously, looking about him carefully before taking a step. I draw my rifle to my shoulder. Through the telescopic sights he is as plain as though he were a few feet in front of me. I could easily kill him from here yet I hesitate to do so. But knowing war for what it is now, that it is either his life or mine, there is nothing left for me to do but pull the trigger. As I felt the heavy recoil of the rifle against my shoulder I knew that another bullet was speeding toward its mark.

I WONDER


1. wonder if my enemy, who is hunting me right now,
Was once a boy the same as I, and took a childish vow,
Never to kill a little bird, or ever rob a nest,
Always to say his prayers at night, before he went to rest.

I wonder if that hand of his that holds a sniper's gun,
Once stroked his mother's hair with love, or her face in boyish fun;
I wonder if his mother is a mother just like mine,
Who says a prayer to God each night, to keep him safe and fine.

I wonder if he thinks of me, as I am thinking too,
I wonder if be doesn't yearn, for his mother sweet and true;
I wonder if he really hates the man he hunts at war,
Or if like me he wonders just what he's fighting for.

I wonder if he sees me now, as I creep up on him,
I wonder if I'm covered by this broken half-leafed limb,
I wonder if he'll aim and fire, when I say "raise up your hands,"
I wonder if our God on high sees us and understands.

I wonder whether he or I will pay the price supreme,
When we come upon each other in this part of war's mad dream;
I wonder if our mothers, will kneel tonight and pray,
To keep their loved sons free from harm, to come back home some day. '

A GODDESS OF MERCY

JOE got back from the hospital today. Said he had never seen anything like it. Twice while he was there they were bombed. Came close, but not close enough to do any harm. Said the nurses there were God's angels on earth. They worked right through bombings and never batted an eyelash. There weren't many of them, but what there were went a long way. It was almost worth getting wounded just to get where you could see an American woman again, and to know that there was something in this war that was decent and clean.

The boy who was on the cot next to Joe's didn't have a chance. The nurse used to come to him every time he started calling for his mother. He was just a kid. It was only a question of time, a few days at the best. A high explosive shell fragment hit him right above the hip. Joe said the nurse was everything to him. When he was delirious she would pretend that she was his mother. The kid would say over and over again, "I knew you would come, mother . . . I knew You would come." And the nurse would take his hand and talk to him. She kept her head turned and was facing Joe. He saw tears rolling down her cheeks as she kept biting her lip to hold them back. Even the hard-boiled guys who lay there forgot about themselves and started pulling for the kid. But they knew it was no use-his number was up.

Joe said the way those nurses stood up under all that strain, he would never know. They would work side by side with the surgeons and then do nursing duty on top of it, until they were dead on their feet, but they still kept on going. They were the real soldiers of war to hear Joe tell it. They were in tougher spots than we were most of the time because of the constant bombing. He said that twice while be was there they were bombed at night by bombing planes, and that all you could do was lay there and pray while you waited for each bomb to bit. That enemy planes were no respecters of hospitals, any more than they were of front line objectives was proven to him, when he lay in that hospital bed flat on his back, unable to move a finger to help himself.

At that though, he said, it was worth the risk to be there, just to lie in a bed again on clean white sheets. It must be like heaven from what Joe says. Someone to bring you grub and have clean water to drink. Boy, that must be heaven, or as close to it as a soldier will ever get.

I had always thought that war was a man's game and that he was the only thing tough enough to stand up under it. Well Joe sure changed my mind about that. I know from my own experience that bombing can put more fear in you than any other form of warfare. You are helpless when in a bombing raid, and when I think of those women working right through those raids on hospitals, and never batting an eyelash, my hat is off to them.

LITTLE GRAY SISTER

How ready your smile for war's wounded things,
How brave your heart though it never sings;
How staunch your fight some life to save,

How truly you are one of war's brave,
As you sit and watch the still nights through;
And pray for some soldier you never knew.

Here in hospitals in war-shattered France,
You too are a soldier taking war's chance;
When a battle is over your fight's just begun,
You are braver than many who carried a gun.
You were mother and sweetheart,
sister and wife,
As you fight the battle of saving a life.

It was you standing by some worn surgeon's side,
Fighting to dam up life's ebbing tide;
You have no medals nor the world's
loud acclaim,
But to the soldier you nursed you will never need fame.
"Little Gray Sister" who fought clay and night,
You were "Goddess of Mercy" and a bit of all right."

A BUDDY GOES WEST'

This business of war is a strange thing. You see men drop alongside of you, coughing and threshing in the throes of death, the blood stream of their wounds gushing to the ground. Yet it does not affect you. Have we not gone for days now with death walking constantly beside us, our steadfast companion?

The whining shells overhead take on a deeper meaning. We can recognize the size of each shell by its sound. The slow turning swishing ones are gas shells. Their slow flight spells greater danger than the roaring big ones higher up. The sharp, whining minnewerfer or whizbang we hear only occasionally, then only when we are fighting at close quarters.

Strangest of all this business of killing are the presentiments or hunches that come to every man. They are uncannily accurate. Among us we say, "unless a shell has my name on it, I'll come out okay." How many of my former comrades have come to me, each with the same look on his face, to bid a last goodbye.

By some intuition deeper than science has yet probed, each man comes to know when he is to "Go West." We soon learned that we could not push these thoughts out of our mind by idle jesting. Each recurrent happening only welded deeper an undeniable truth-that there was some power greater than ours that told us when our time had come.

Less than a third of our original company was left. Casualties had been heavy. The dense underbrush and forest of the Argonne was taking heavy toll of our forces. For four years the Germans had occupied this territory. Every known device of the science of war had been concealed there waiting invading troops. More than sixty thousand Frenchmen had given their lives in an effort to capture it. They did not make a dent on this natural stronghold occupied by the enemy.

Yet there we were, green, raw troops, many of us not out of our 'teens, steadily forging ahead each day, pushing the enemy back at a frightful price of life. We moved with the slow, heavy tread of machines. Stalking through the woods, like walking automatons, we seemed to be without blood, or flesh, or heart, or soul.

On the eve of our last drive my best buddy came to me to say goodbye. We had grown up together back home. So far we bad come through this carnage unscathed. But I knew by the look on his face now that here was another hunch - that his number was up. He had been one of eight selected to go on a dangerous raiding party. He passed me a few trinkets to take back to his folks, and his words still ring in my mind.

TONIGHT I DIE

Out in the night where the cruel wire strands
Of entanglements are laid,
Tonight I shall take the hand of Death And walk with him unafraid.
The sun went down with a ruddy glare As red as the red of gore,
And I gazed at its rays with greedy eyes For me it will rise no more.
I raised my eyes to count each star And bid it a last farewell.
And the brightest one made a long gold line Across the sky as it fell.

I cannot know where we shall meet,
I and the Man called Death,
But I know I will greet him unaware And speak with my final breath.
Long have I seen his shadowed shape, Stalking across the land.
Many the friend that has stumbled out And taken him by the hand.
So the stars wheel by in my last dark sky And this is the end of strife
A watch that glows on my muddy wrist And measures away my life.

THE BOX BARRAGE

DURING the course of our fighting in the Argonne Forest we engaged in a terrific battle that nearly wiped out our company. For days we had been fighting through the heart of the central ravine of the forest steep, heavily wooded banks rose from either side of a creek bed at the bottom of the gulch. We kept pretty close to the path that had been laid out there.
Part of the time we followed the course of the stream. Then the road would rise halfway up the hill. It was at these high points that we were most cautious. For it was in such places that we afforded the best targets for enemy machine guns and snipers, lying concealed everywhere in the dense underbrush of the forest.

To avoid one such exposure, we were given orders to cut a path through the underbrush. This we did with our bayonets. Much to our surprise, we went through without being fired on. We came to a bend in the ravine. Then we could see directly ahead why we had come through without being molested.

In a little clearing in front of us was what remained of a large building. The Germans had been using it as a headquarters. One of our heavy artillery shells had made a direct hit on the roof, crushing it to the ground. The splintered wood and logs were scattered all around. The foundation, which was made of small stones, was crushed and mashed out of shape. The building, sagging there, looked like some great wounded thing waiting for first aid.

Strewn over the ground in front of the building were the bodies of many of the enemy, fully a dozen or more. God alone knew how many were buried inside the building. Many of the bodies did not have a scratch on them. Apparently they had been killed from the shock of the explosion.

Hardly had we reached this opening than we were strafed with machine gun and sniper fire. There was no place for us to go except straight up the hillside. The underbrush offered cover. Quickly we climbed to a ridge and safety near the crest of the hill. We rested there while the top-sergeant counted noses. A regimental runner came to our sergeant, giving him an order.

The order read that we were to advance to the top of the hill. There we would find an apple orchard. We were to wait there for the support of our one pound (Stokes) mortars. Then we were to advance through the orchard until we came to the top of two dugouts. This was to be our objective.

I was close by the sergeant when the order was received.

"Apple orchard," he laughed, "Well, maybe this is a new way of getting our rations."

None of us could imagine an orchard in this forest. All we had seen for days was war-blasted, blackened trees, wounded things of war. Yet when we reached the top of the hill, there was the orchard. Stretching

out for at least a mile ahead, and fully two blocks wide. We learned later that it had been planted there many years before by priests.

Our Stokes mortars came up and were placed in position. A few trial shots were fired towards the tops of two dugouts, which we could see ahead of us. The trees were scattered, and there was much open land between. We were dubious about exposing ourselves in this open country. We had been fighting in the forest long that instinctively we looked to it for protection.

Nothing happened when the trial shots were fired. We waited a few minutes. Then the sergeant gave the order to charge the hill. Spreading out in open formation as skirmishers, we took what scant protection the apple trees offered. Much to our surprise we advanced to our objective without opposition from the enemy. In view of our constant battling for the last week, this puzzled us.

We set up two light machine guns on the tops of two dugouts. To reach them we had to cut our way through about a hundred feet of old barbwire entanglements. This stopped short of the objective by about fifty feet. Between the wire and dugouts was an abandoned trench, built in the zig-zag style common to the earlier front line trenches.

Hardly were the machine guns placed when all hell broke loose. The tense silence of the last half hour turned to an inferno of war made hell; barking guns, whining shells, and the sharp zing of rifle bullets. A German airplane appeared and circled above us. The pilot made no attempt to strafe us with gunfire. In. stead he signaled our position to the German artillery. Knowing what would follow, our men took cover, seeking safety in the old trench behind us.

This was our greatest mistake. Apparently it was just as the Germans had planned it. No sooner were the men lined up in the trench than we found ourselves the center of a box barrage. To form this barrage, the enemy laid their shells down just behind the barbed wire and trench, then hemming it in on both sides, this left our from open for machine gun and rifle fire strafing.

The machine guns on top of the dugouts were manned by five men each. It was a pitiably weak comeback in exchange for the pounding we were taking from the enemy. At any moment we expected to see the Germans come popping out of the two dugouts forming our position. But this did not happen. Instead the German artillery began laying down one pound shells on top of the poor devils huddled in the trench. For them there was no escape. Those of us handling the machine guns were better off in our exposed position, even though it was worth your life to raise up and fire the guns.

There was no avenue of escape except through the barbed wire. Finally our sergeant ordered us to retreat. Then the enemy increased the intensity of their machine gun fire. Enmeshed in that treacherous wire, more than one poor devil passed on to the Great Beyond.

We were ordered to cover the retreat with the machine guns. This we did. In the meantime our one pounders came to the rescue. Reinforced with an additional battery of Stokes mortars, they took a position behind us, pounding the enemy back. Thoroughly disorganized, we fell back to a hill in the rear. After a checkup we learned that nearly ninety men of our company had been killed or wounded in the fight.

That night three of us were placed on outpost duty in the ravine below the hill that had cost us so dearly that day. We had no sooner taken our position when a sniper killed one of my two comrades. I hardly knew the men with me, for the day had been a horrible dream. It was hard to believe it had actually happened. Yet I knew it to be so. As we started to dig a shallow grave to bold the body of our dead comrade, I learned that the other soldier with me was Dago Tony. He was an undersized Italian boy, possibly twenty-eight years of age, an old timer in the company and a veteran of several battles.

Lying there the first night, we broke into confidences, as men under fire will do. We waited throughout the next day. No relief reached us. We felt we were through, and that our numbers were up; that it was only a matter of hours until we would be captured or shot out. Then the Italian boy told me his story.

TREASURES

Treasures in bits of papers,
Treasures in mines of gold,
Treasures in age-dimmed relies,
And in paintings worn and old.

Each to his way of thinking,
Has a treasure in his grasp,
I got mine from a roughneck,
It lay in a simple hand-clasp.

Up in the lines in the heat of a fight,
With the devil as our host,
He had shown us all his tricks and stunts,
In a lonely listening post.

No water, no food, no shelter,
There we had lain for days;
Wounded and slowly dying,
With our eyes beginning to glaze.

The orders had been to hold that post,
Against all odds that might come,
And we were sticking it out alone,
just me and my Dago chum.

I suppose there are those who'd call him a "wop,"
This soldier who lay there with me,
Yet he was fighting hard as I,
Who was cradled in liberty.

It was, "Whata-da-hell? let 'em a-come,
We fight 'em a-hard, you and I!
Whatsa da deeff'? It's-a all for da cause,
And somatime we moosta die.

Myself, I got da sweet-a leetla wife,
That's-a wait at home for me,
Deesa war she's-a one dam tougha game,
But we got to hava liberty."

Then Tony told me his story,
As we lay in post number four,
Why he was so willing to fight and die,
For a land he would always adore.

"When I was joosta leetla boy,
Back cena Sunny Italy,
I heara my father speak of a-thing,
That he calla da Liberty.

He tell of a country datsa paveda with gold,
Where every a-man is da same,
Where me and ever-a-boddy that try,
Has gotta da chance for da fame.

Where no king anda queen can tella you,
Joosta what you got to do,
I'ma get think' to myself,
How grand if datsa true.

So by and by, I grow up,
Beeg, stronga boy, 'bout seexteen,
And come along in a steeraga boat,
To the land of my wonderful dream.

There I find its joosta so true,
Whata papa say she's a-right,
I'ma live ina great free country,
My owna boss, every day and night.

Why evrathing is joosta so free,
You almosta like the bird,
You only worka so much each day,
Not a lika da sheep are you herd.

Den, I meet my sweet-a Marie,
An' we getta marry one day,
Then build a preety leetla home
By time, babee come to stay.

I tella you evrathing is so nice,
I'ma get along joosta fine,
Untila da Kaiz', he getta so fresh,
Joosta 'bout deesa time.

Evrathing he want to take,
Mak-a do joosta what he said,
I tella you, I no lika dat stoff,
I'ma much ratha be dead.

So I graba da gun and come along,
Lik-a all da rest who are here,
'Cause I'ma gonna fight, for a-what is right,
And-a my leetla home so dear.

Please-a wait, you lie quiet,
While I look around a beet,
But-a donta forget, to tell. Marie,
Ina case I'ma mabbe get heet

He took and shook me by the hand,
Then started out alone,
To me it brought an awakening,
To the treasure that I own.

So I'm done with material treasures,
Such as relics, mines, and things,
And treasure instead the memories,
Of love that sacrifice brings.
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