Band of Brothers

I spent Christmas in a foxhole,
Listening to Stille Nacht across the way,
The tree line sang,
And it was dark, deep and snowing,
But the white ground reflected just fine against the moon,
Now I can't eat cherry snow cones,
Because of the way the tracks dragged along and then stopped,
You could still make out a body if you tried,
Well we were taught never to leave a good man behind,
But sometimes there wasn't much man left,
And sometimes there was just too much man to take,
In a land where over twenty-five was old,
Me, Don and George we were just kids,
And my Ma kept trying to send me birthday cake for finally becoming a man,
She kept asking "Was I keeping warm?"
Was I keeping warm?

Angry didn't begin to cover the way no one mentioned him again,
After he fell,
I was keeper of dog tags, locked in my fist,
Fear like a sneeze,
Always at the back of my throat but I didn't let it go,
So I cried alone,
And we tried to get by together,
And I wish I could say he was always with us,
The forgotten shadow in the foxhole,
But the truth is he was taken with little resistance,
And I never saw him again,
Third grade captain of the baseball team,
Kissed a girl before I did,
I was afraid to wash the filthy clothes he left behind,
For fear of wiping him from existence,
They let me keep a shirt without bloodstains,
And it felt like home for months,
Until the smell of my friend began to fade.

I had to stand up,
To be the best man I could be,
Because German was in my tongue and so far away for everyone else,
I saw the dead walking towards me in striped pyjamas,
Shook my head and said: "I don't wanna",
Well my boys picked me up and said: "Joey, you just gotta",
So I saw the worst of what humans can do,
Looked apathetic, like a soldier,
Didn't cry,
But when he told me: "I am a Jew",
I answered: "So am I",
And the star of David he wore on his arm,
Mine was tattooed on my heart,
Once we'd calmed them down,
Denied them my box of rations,
I fell to my knees and sobbed,
Humans punishing humans punishing humans,
And no amount of screaming would stop the film behind my eyes,
They told me I did well today,
"Joe, you did good for your people." 

It's been a tough war,
It's been a long war,
And my girl back home,
I married her straight away,
Even though she wasn't a Jew,
But I could have lived and died in her beautiful blonde hair,
So my Ma loved her anyway,
I wanted several daughters,
And I wanted several sons,
So they could have brothers like I did,
My girl called me a hero,
But I ain't no hero,
I ain't no saint,
I ain't no warrior,
I ain't no order,
I ain't no weapon,
No blood,
No war,
I am the cry for a medic in the dead of night,
I am the line of defence that would not move,
I am no surrender,
I am a survivor,
I am surviving still,
I am a husband,
A father,
A friend,
But most of all, 

I am a Brother.

Dedicated to the veterans of World War Two and all those who fought so hard but didn't make it. 
US and British soldiers, we salute you.

4 thoughts on “Band of Brothers

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s