The Common Soldier

By 7th April 2009December 9th, 2019No Comments

He is called a Common Soldier, he comes from many lands,
He fights in steaming jungles, he dies in desert sands,
He sweats upon the drill square, he fears the sergeants eye,
He is the first to march away, among the first to die.
He cares not for daunting odds, nor seeks a place to hide,
He is but a Common Soldier, with another at his side.

He takes no joy in death or causing hurt to others,
He is but a soldier, and all soldiers are but brothers.
He will though fight his countries foe,
He will pass the point where few men go,
He takes misfortune in his stride,
He takes success with quiet pride.

He is given tawdry medals, to be hung upon his breast,
He is quietly contented, he was called, he passed the test.
He is called a Common Soldier, always fighting in the van,
He is called a Common Soldier, but a very Uncommon Man.

He faced the Roman, Turk and Hun,
He was seen at Vimy and Bull Run,
He served with Monty, Ike and Moore,
He took the heights – he stormed the shore.
He fought his war, for it was the last,
He then fought others, to repeat the past.

He fought again to free Kuwait,
He fought again, but not with hate,
He saw the enemy, a simple man,
He saw the specter of Saadam.
He knew too what must be done,
He knew he might die under desert sun.

He knows his worth for across the lands,
He hears the cheers and marching bands,
He knows too that his time has come,
He knows his duty was bravely done.
He stands alone among the throng,
He is bowed and bent, but inward strong,
He was once a Common Soldier, a small part of the plan,
He was once a Common Soldier, but a very Uncommon Man.

Len Payne

Author Len Payne

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