General Chat

Top tip - using the Genes Reunited community

Welcome to the Genes Reunited community boards!

  • The Genes Reunited community is made up of millions of people with similar interests. Discover your family history and make life long friends along the way.
  • You will find a close knit but welcoming group of keen genealogists all prepared to offer advice and help to new members.
  • And it's not all serious business. The boards are often a place to relax and be entertained by all kinds of subjects.
  • The Genes community will go out of their way to help you, so don’t be shy about asking for help.

Quick Search

Single word search

Genes Extras

Genes Reunited subscription bonuses

As a way of saying thank you to our subscribers, we have launched Genes Extras. You'll find exclusive competitions and discounts on family history magazines, days out and much more.

Take me to Genes Extras


  • New posts
  • No new posts
  • Thread closed
  • Stickied, new posts
  • Stickied, no new posts


ProfilePosted byOptionsPost Date


MrDaff Report 23 Nov 2007 20:25

The embers glowed softly, and in their dim light,
I gazed round the room and I cherished the sight.
My wife was asleep, her head on my chest,
My daughter beside me, angelic in rest.

Outside the snow fell, a blanket of white,
Transforming the yard to a winter delight.

The sparkling lights in the tree I believe,
Completed the magic that was Christmas Eve.

My eyelids were heavy, my breathing was deep,
Secure and surrounded by love I would sleep.
In perfect contentment, or so it would seem,
So I slumbered, perhaps I started to dream.

The sound wasn't loud, and it wasn't too near,
But I opened my eyes when it tickled my ear.
Perhaps just a cough, I didn't quite know,
Then the sure sound of footsteps outside in the snow.

My soul gave a tremble, I struggled to hear,
And I crept to the door just to see who was near.

Standing out in the cold and the dark of the night,
A lone figure stood, his face weary and tight.

A soldier, I puzzled, some twenty years old,
Perhaps British, huddled here in the cold.
Alone in the dark, he looked up and smiled,
Standing watch over me, and my wife and my child.

"What are you doing?" I asked without fear,
"Come in this moment, it's freezing out here!
Put down your pack, brush the snow from your sleeve,
You should be at home on a cold Christmas Eve!"

For barely a moment I saw his eyes shift,
Away from the cold and the snow blown in drifts.

To the window that danced with a warm fire's light
Then he sighed and he said "Its really all right,
I'm out here by choice. I'm here every night."

"It's my duty to stand at the front of the line,
That separates you from the darkest of times.

No one had to ask or beg or implore me,
I'm proud to stand here like my fathers before me.

My Grand Father died at 'Normandy on a day in December,"
Then he sighed, "That's a Christmas 'Grandad always remembers."

My dad stood his watch in that Korean Land',
And now it is my turn and so, here I am.

I've not seen my own son in more than a while,
But my wife sends me pictures, he's sure got her smile.
Then he bent and he carefully pulled from his bag,
Something red, white and blue ... a Union Jack flag.

I can live through the cold and the being alone,
Away from my family, my house and my home.

I can stand at my post through the rain and the sleet,
I can sleep in a trench with little to eat.

I can carry the weight of killing another,
Or lay down my life with my sister and brother..
Who stand at the front against any and all,
To ensure for all time that this flag will not fall."

"So go back inside," he said, "harbour no fright,
Your family is waiting and I'll be all right."
"But isn't there something I can do, at the least,
"Give you money," I asked, "or prepare you a feast?
It seems all too little for all that you've done,
For being away from your wife and your son."

Then his eye welled a tear that held no regret,
"Just tell us you love us, and never forget.

To fight for our rights back at home while we're gone,
To stand your own watch, no matter how long.

For when we come home, either standing or dead,
To know you remember we fought and we bled.
Is payment enough, and with that we will trust,
That we mattered to you as you mattered to us."

I don't know where this originated yet, but will add an acknowledgement when I do. I had it in an e-mail today.


Daff xxx

Rambling Rose

Rambling Rose Report 23 Nov 2007 20:29

particularly poignant given the news this evening on cut backs , Daff'....Thanks for putting it on the board as a reminder to us all .


Nolls from Harrogate

Nolls from Harrogate Report 23 Nov 2007 20:42

What a lovely poem a reminder to us of the sacrifices that was made for us all. Thanks for that



MrDaff Report 23 Nov 2007 20:57

This was sent to my hubby by one of the soldiers he worked with.

She has recently returned from her second tour in Iraq, and will be off to Afghanistan next year for the second time.

It brought me up short when I read it.


Daff xxx


Felicity Report 23 Nov 2007 21:01


MrDaff Report 23 Nov 2007 21:07

Thank you for that Felicity... we did wonder if it was an American verse that had been adapted. The sentiment is still the same for me, though.

It is so close to home for me.


Daff xxx


Felicity Report 23 Nov 2007 21:27

You're welcome, Daff. :-)

Purple **^*Sparkly*^** Diamond

Purple **^*Sparkly*^** Diamond Report 24 Nov 2007 03:55

That is lovely. Wish I had had it to print out and pass to our soldiers parading in Norwich this last week. Would I be infringing on anyone's copyright if I sent it in to the letters page of our local paper? There was a write up of the parade in this evening's paper.


Susan719813 Report 24 Nov 2007 11:12

ooooh! Daff I have just read this and it has started me off sniffing! That was so beautiful!


♥ Kitty the Rubbish Cook ♥

♥ Kitty the Rubbish Cook ♥ Report 24 Nov 2007 11:15

Thanks Daff..........................a beautiful poem.



trishcurtis Report 24 Nov 2007 12:47

This is the kind of thing should be nudged not all the trivia that seems to be . . . .


MrDaff Report 24 Nov 2007 12:55

Not long logged on, so not sure what has been happening.

Liz, I have pm'd you.

It is a beautiful poem, and very thought provoking at this time of year.

It was written by a Veteran of the Vietnam war, I believe. My husband has found out the details, and I will edit my post as soon as he gets in.


Daff xxx

Easter Bunny

Easter Bunny Report 24 Nov 2007 13:07

beautiful,powerful and very emotional.

Bunny x


LesleyB Report 24 Nov 2007 14:36

so nice Daff, makes you think.
I work for a local English speaking paper out here and we did an article this week about sending money, letters & parcels to our boys out in Iraq and Afghanistan so I will forward this to my editor for our next issue to go with the results of how much we have collected.

Lesley in Spain x


MrDaff Report 24 Nov 2007 19:38

Thought I would nudge this up, in support of Chris's thread.


Daff xxx


Susan10146857 Report 19 Nov 2012 23:45

Another nudge as it was dear to her heart


michael2 Report 20 Nov 2012 08:32