by Cpl. Robert Lin Cook
Jan 1942–Sep 1945

I really do not remember:
Have I written Christmas words?
Have I spoken of the things we did
when far away from home?
Have I spoken of lonely feelings
as we squatted in the mud,
making believe we're happy
taking lives and
spilling blood?

Can we all remember
our first Christmas
far from home?
Were we on an island,
or on a ship so all alone?
Were your buddies
just as lonely?
Were they sad and forlorn?
Did they think about tomorrow
and about the coming storm?

No matter where you are
when Christmas time has come,
your spirit is not happy
for you miss
the hearth of home.
Things that you remember,
the people that you love,
are ever there before you,
like a blessing from above.

Blessings on you, soldier boy
and sailor and Marine.
When it comes to Christmas,
home is the only scene.

*     *     *
The author: Robert Lin Cook served with Reg. Weapons Co. (2d-2d) from 1942–44, at Guadalcanal and Tarawa during a 33-month overseas tour.

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