First Light Starlight – star bright – shadows in the night.
I pray that calm will be, that we may see The next first light.
Moonlight – too bright, we fear will bring a firefight.
If that must be – I pray to thee that we survive til next first light.
A distant sound brings chills of fright Eyes open wide – no sleep tonight.
The sounds so slight are amplified It’s long away from next first light.
We’re young, and strong – this starlit night But do not boast with great delight.
Hold back the tears – I must for years if I survive to see first light.
This patrol we must complete the enemy we must defeat.
And later time to eat – we might If we may see the next first light
Old we wish to grow to be – we dream of wives, of kids, and family.
We pray to thee with all our might – that we walk softly through the night.
And make no sound – we know the enemy is all around- Intent to keep us from the sight of morning next – and new first light.
Complete our mission – on we go Searching for enemy – our hearts pound so. And time stands still it seems – so slow. When is first light? – We want to know.
Our prayers we whisper – silently this night Once again please Jesus – let this end.
Please get us back among our friends Where there we rest and dry our feet and thank you for the grand first light.
Along this treacherous ground we move – then suddenly a clicking noise
And then the unmistakable explosive sound from point to six – the sudden chill.
I’m falling down I – pray the fluid on my brow is sweat – not blood. And that the fragments stinging so are dirt and mud.
Is this all a dream? – the noise is deafening – this cannot be A flash so bright – is our war over on this night?
Is that our friend lying wounded there – why him not me?
This is insane – it isn’t right – we only asked to see first light.
Starlight, star bright, a brilliant flash. The evening sky we see and fear and now the only sound we hear Is but the ringing in our ears.
Our nostrils fill with smell of fire and flesh. This is too soon, too young are we.
Most are but teens – I’m not twenty. Another morning please.
Not much to ask – that all come home. We’ve done our task – brothers we – yet each feels all alone.
And memories of that and other days after many years won’t go away. The sacrifices others paid – not I.
A lifelong grief – a heart to cry.
Unanswered questions why you had to die.
We hide the tears that none shall see.
We hide away in woods or room – The haunting thoughts of doom – why him not me?
Eyes open wide – we look about.
Not a word, not a shout.
But silently for all we plead
We share with each – there is no greed – we really have a simple need.
Our prayer was answered – but not for all.
And those of us who lived shall always wonder why – the simple prayer to last the night.
To take away the tears and fright – was granted me –not thee my friend.
And so…I pray that when my life must end, as brothers we will walk again.
Softly though – we’ll make no sound.
Our buddies know that still – with them we are around.
Our final comfort we have found.
No longer will we have to fight, the war has gotten dim.
And finally peace may come to us when God has called us home to him
to see the beauty of First Light.
With love he gives to us when time has come what we had prayed for all along.
With a warming smile and gentle song to us he gives our last First Light.
– John J. Freeman SSgt. USMC 1964-1971 –
Dedicated to all who served with the 1st Battalion, 9th Marines
“The Walking Dead”
SEMPER FIDELIS is Forever