Tom Zart's Best WW II Pomes
by Tom Zart
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WHERE WARS ARE WON OR LOST
Wars are waged by older men
In battle rooms in countries apart.
Who call for greater firepower
And troops for the combat chart.
While out among the shattered flesh
The dreams of all have turned gray.
So young and determined their faces were
Till on the battlefield they lay.
Unable to overcome their pride
The overseers cast their vote.
For this or that or something else
As the thunder of war sounds its note.
Wherever wars are won or lost
The soldiers fall like toys.
Down through history it remains the same
Most who pass are hardly more than boys.
THE LONELINESS OF WAR
I know Iím still here so far, far away,
As I fight for what I believe is right.
I wonder about you and your mom,
Every moment of every day and night.
The loneliness of war can drive you insane,
If you donít get letters of concern from home.
Left, right, behind and ahead,
Death awaits leaving love ones alone.
We pray to God that we will be saved
To return home or live the here after.
Bloody, dirt-covered men, we see everyday,
As we yearn for those times of laughter.
The far off stare of a fallen comrade,
As you stay by his side till his end.
No mother ever carried her infant child
More carefully, than we do a friend.
Many have their own personal diaries,
To help keep their faculties together.
Watching hot steel crash into human flesh,
Always make home seem far away and better.
Iíve become an expert at dodging, weaving and diving,
So try not to worry too much about me.
Just help your mom and stand up from the ground,
And while Iím gone be all you can be.
In their new uniforms,
The young march off
Not knowing who shall return.
With a proud devotion,
They brandish their flag
Leaving loved ones to wonder and yearn.
May we all be buried
By all of our children
Is an ancient tribal prayer.
They're so easy to lose
But so hard to forget;
Such a burden for a parent to bear.
Oh, the taste of victory
Shall soon be forgotten;
But, never that which was lost.
For those rows of white headstones
In peaceful green fields,
Make it easy to tally the cost.
America has survived all attempts to destroy
Knowing the cruelty of war,
And, we who remain
Must help keep her free
For those who can march no more!
KENNEDY THE WAR YEARS
After the attack on Pearl Harbor
He applied for sea duty in the war.
Where Lieutenant John F. Kennedy
Became known for his bravery and more.
In the dark hours before dawn
On August 2, of 43.
Kennedy commanded a torpedo boat
Through the blackness of night at sea.
PT Ė 109, was on Solomonís patrol
With a 12-man crew in a plywood craft.
A Japanese destroyer plowed through the night
Ramming and cutting Kennedyís boat in half.
Two of the crew just disappeared
A third was badly burned.
Kennedy himself was thrown to the deck,
Where in pain his leadership he earned.
Some of his men had never learned to swim
As he gathered them on the bobbing bow.
The hours passed till it seemed it would sink
So they made for an island and hereís how.
He ordered those who could to swim
The others were to hang on to a beam.
Kennedy grabbed the injured sailor
And off they tread through the ocean stream.
With his teeth clenched on the burnt manís vest straps
Skipper Kennedy swam 3 miles.
5 hours later they all made it
Despite their hardships, sharks, and trials.
The next problem was how to summon up help
Without arousing the enemy all around.
After several attempts swimming to other islands
Eventually two natives in a canoe were found.
Kennedy scratched a note on a coconut
To be delivered to a base 38 miles away.
The message made it and they were saved
And their courage still lives today.
Our ship had sailed before the dawn
Surrounded by the thickest of fog,
Still ignorant of our destination
Or what was written in the captain's log.
It didn't take long for me to see
Our cruise was not for fun;
An experience of a lifetime
With nowhere for us to run.
Twenty knots per hour we cruised
As the white caps passed us by;
Ten thousand young Americans
Off to Europe to die.
A sailor told us not to worry;
Someday weíd get our mail.
Uncle Sam would make sure
No matter how far we sail.
Thirty feet deep I tried to sleep
Beneath our ship's waterline,
Just the place for claustrophobia
To enter into my mind.
My favorite vest was my May West
Which I wore all the time
Just in case of German U-boats
Or an underwater mine.
Thirty-three days we were at sea,
We crossed the equator twice.
Many years have passed since then,
Those years of sacrifice.
As war is fought it takes charge,
And events spin out of control.
The madness of men can alter the soil
Which nourishes the roots of their soul.
Many things will forever change,
Far more then wished to be.
As the wrath of war starts to destroy,
Those things we fight to keep free.
War is the greatest plague of man,
Religion, state, and sanity.
Any scourge is more preferred,
Than the one which disables humanity.
When war breaks out, boundaries change
And all who die are a token,
Of the rage that must run it's course,
Before words of peace are spoken.
DADS AT WAR
Where would I be without you dad?
My hero of night and day
I'm so glad you love my mother,
And take time for us each day.
The last time we played baseball,
You reached for me with your hand.
I looked at you, then made a wish,
That I might be just half the man.
I love my father of this earth,
And I love my father of heaven.
It's a lot for me to love, you know,
For Iím only eleven.
Mom and I sure miss you,
Since you left to defend our flag.
When others ask, where is your dad?
I can't help but boast and brag.
D-Day raised the curtain on the conflict
That fore shadowed the end of Hitler's dream.
The largest joint combat landing ever,
Though the blood from both sides flowed like a stream.
When their boats hit the sand, their ramps went down,
And all within paid a visit to hell.
They jumped out to do good for their country,
And to kill the enemy without fail.
They fought the Germans, tides, winds and the waves,
In conditions not easily foreseen.
By night the battle was in our favor,
With bravery, valor, death, and men who scream.
The corpses littered the beach for five miles,
Though heroism had carried the day,
With literally thousands dead or wounded,
Those who were left were determined to stay.
They faced great odds and chose not to protest,
And won the war that put evil to shame.
Most came home, married and raised their babies,
But those who could not we recall with pain.
Sunday, December the seventh,
In the year of 1941,
While most of Hawaii still slept,
Came the planes of the Rising Sun.
Waves of bombers and fighters flew,
From the decks of the Japanese ships.
While our planes were still on the ground,
"Banzai" was spoken from their lips.
The winds of war had been blowing
Across the oceans of our earth,
Though not till Pearl had been bombed,
Did we realize what freedomís worth.
Wars are fought and won on two fronts,
At home and on the battle line.
Both are equally important,
When war consumes our heart and mind.
The attack brought us World War II,
With death, pain and separation.
All who had served were well aware
Of their sacrifice for nation.
D-DAY - THE WALL
Over two hundred rangers scaled "The Wall"
A stone cliff over one hundred feet tall.
Some of them made it all the way to the top,
While others fell and perished from their drop.
Those who climbed over, had answered God's call;
For men to stop evil once and for all.
They fought the Germans and destroyed their guns,
To save the lives of our fathers and sons.
So many years have passed since then,
When our world's future was saved by brave men.
We cannot forget the hell they went through,
Before the skies, again turned blue.
It was June the 4th 1942,
As I was floating in the ocean alone;
The ship I had sailed on, sank to the bottom
And I thought I would never again, see home.
The Japanese fleet had steamed in from the east
With the intentions of capturing Midway.
Though they were stopped by American war ships,
Whose guns, bombs and torpedoes planes saved the day.
All night long, I watched the fireworks of war
And on the second day we turned up the heat.
As big bombers from Hawaii dropped their loads,
On Japanese ships who soon chose to retreat.
An imperial pilot came floating close by,
Who had been chewed on by the beasts of the sea.
I couldn't help but feel passion for this is man
Who had answered his call just like me.
When it was over, I was plucked from the deep,
By men in a lifeboat just after the dawn.
For two days I had watched the battle for, Midway;
Now it's quiet and the enemy has gone.
I drifted all night and was loosing my hope
Before by the moon's light I saw dry land.
I floated over and through its reefs to the beach,
Where I quickly smoothed out my tracks in the sand.
All I had was my dagger and a canteen
And it was May 4th of 43.
Just me alone on an enemy island,
Wasn't a safe place for a sailor to be.
I felt I could kill in less than a heartbeat
If that's what it took for me to survive.
Iíd already said thanks so many times,
ForĒ GodĒ was the reason I was alive.
Off in the dark, I herd two men's voices,
Laughing and talking in a language not mine.
Inch by inch I crept to their campsite,
Where on what they were eating, I would soon dine.
I stabbed them both and took their fish, rice and wine;
Then ran my way back to the raft by the beach.
Soon I was floating in the ocean again
And far enough out where bullets couldn't reach.
The next day I was picked up by a seaplane,
Whose crew spotted my sail from the air.
Once inside and safe, I cried like a child,
For the dead whom would forever be there.
It was hard to believe heaven let me live;
A farm boy from Kansas, in high school last year.
My girlfriend is blond and she hates it I 'm gone.
Though I'm a veteran of battle, death, and fear.
General quarters, general quarters,
All hands man your battle station!
Sunday morning, December the 7th,
As war confronted our nation.
We soon found out it wasn't a drill
But instead it was war for real.
As you watch the death of friends and shipmates,
It's more anger than fear you feel.
Japanese warplanes came flying in low,
As I took aim with my gun sight.
From the deck of a ship anchored at Pearl
Damaged, though crew still eager to fight.
I saw the face of a pilot, who crashed,
Surrounded by black smoke and fire.
Some of my bullets must have found their mark.
For his death was but my desire!
Two thousand, three hundred and twenty-three killed,
In a battle less than two hours.
With the heart of our Pacific fleet gone,
Japan had flexed their naval powers.
The bombing and strafing of ships and troops
Caused our congress to declare full war.
Where many a man laid down his life
Fighting for flag, country and more.
Okinawa was to be our last stop
Before we invaded Japan.
The largest landing of the Pacific war,
As our soldiers ran across the sand.
At first our marines were scarcely opposed
But on the fifth day hell they found.
A solid wall of human resistance
Firing their weapons from caves in the ground.
Air power and big guns had little affect
On their cliff forts carved deep in the limestone.
It took man against man to root them out
As flying bullets pierced flesh and bone.
Kamikaze pilots crashed their planes
Knocking out transports and war ships.
As the Imperial air force struck our fleet,
Cries of fear and hate spewed from lips.
One hundred, ten thousand Japanese
By the end of the battle were killed.
Over twelve thousand Americans died,
Before, just our flag flew over the field.
Our flag is fabric wove of thread,
Carried by heroes live and dead.
She stands for justice and courage too,
With her colors; red, white and blue.
For all who serve her, thereíll be cheers,
For any who die, thereíll be tears,
For all who love her, life is swell,
For those who harm her, war is hell.
How many moms have cried before,
As they sent their children to war.
How many dads have not returned,
Because our freedom must be earned.
Wars were waged where brave men died
As patriots fought side by side.
Our flag is still the pearl of earth,
Because of those who prove her worth.
The cost of freedom is sometimes high,
Extremely more when our loved one's die.
Men and women pledged to fight and serve,
And it's our support that they deserve.
Mankind itself is the one to blame,
That all through history, the story's the same.
Peace, like love, can be hard to acquire,
Subject always to enemy fire.
Some how the righteouses tend to prevail,
Over the miss-guided, prone to fail.
No wonder we fear the tongues that lie,
As mankind squabbles beneath God's sky.
The danger our solders face is real,
So lets let them know just how we feel.
Put forth your flag and show them your heart,
As those we love from us depart.
BATTLE OF THE ATLANTIC
After the fall of France in 1940,
The Germans soon began their own blockade,
With most their efforts in the Atlantic,
Hoping to cut Britain's flow of war trade.
With fast surface raiders like the Bismarck,
Merchant ships caught at sea, had little chance.
The Germanís small navy sank ship after ship,
Till the British Navy destroyed war's romance.
Shipping losses from German U-boats increased,
And the battle of the Atlantic seemed lost.
But soon America would enter the war,
To defeat freedomís enemies at all cost.
Multitudes would die and their families cry,
Before World War II would be fought to its end.
What a waste of mankind, which had lost its mind,
Though now, our enemy is our friend.
When you become a P.O.W.
You find you've lost your liberty and more,
The guy with the gun tells you what to do,
As you yearn for freedoms you had before.
Your will to serve helps keep you alive,
Though sometimes you wish you were dead.
Tortures far beyond any normal mind,
And there's no safety, even your bed.
Bullets, barbwire, searchlights and sharp teeth,
Keep you in a place you don't wish to be.
The food is quite awful and sometimes it moves,
And you've no choice of what you hear or see.
The lucky are released and return home,
Though in their dreams their fate is unsure.
War may be hell, but confinement is worse,
Cause afterwards you're never as you were.
THE HINGE OF HISTORY
The hinge of history swings in all directions
As the happenings of the past are written down.
Out of all that has occurred since man's beginnings,
Less has been recorded than waits to be found.
Babylonians kept chronicles of history,
Hebrews wrote the past as a dramatic story.
Greeks had no faith in the future at all,
Believing mans repeated errors doom his glory.
Christians added a new dimension to history,
Looking forward to Christís return to earth.
An on going drama involving man and God,
Believing all are created of equal worth.
Some have asked why must we study history;
It just encourages us to live in the past.
When we forget history we repeat its mistakes,
As the outcome of humanity is cast.
World War I gave us the fly-boys
Who flew by the seat of their pants.
Many would never return from war
While others survived by chance.
Their planes were mostly canvas and wood
Gasoline, bullets, bombs and poison gas.
Every pilot carried his own pistol
Wearing leathers, scarf and goggles of glass.
Aviators had no Parachutes
To escape their burning plane.
Many were forced to jump to their death
Or self inflect a bullet to the brain.
Blimps where known as battleships of the sky
The roar of their engines gave reason for fear.
They flew so high they were hard to shoot down
Hiding above clouds till their targets drew near.
Tracer bullets for the first time were used
In the guns of airplanes to set blimps a fire.
The skies became manís highway of death
With duty and honor their driving desire.
How many Fly-boys have we lost since then
Those days of the Great War and more?
Where do we get such brave souls of chance
Who rise from the rest in the battles of war?
SACRIFICE,TRANSFORMATION,AND UNRESTRICTED WARFARE
The Japanese hadnít lost a war since 1598
Each man carried 400 rounds of ammunition
(twice as many as an American infantryman)
With five days rations and fearless determination.
The men in the badly wrapped brown uniforms
Since their early childhood had been taught
That to die for the emperor and oneís country
Was the greatest of all glories to be sought.
Moreover, the hardware backing them was awesome
As sharpshooters they were accurate up to a thousand yards and more.
Their ships were faster, their guns bigger, Their torpedoes better,
And their plains matchless in quality, aerobatics and score.
Only by sacrifice, transformation, and unrestricted warfare
Was America able to overcome and prevail.
Again America must stand firm to survive
As we face a new monster from Hell.
AS THE MADNESS OF WAR TELLS ITS STORY
Goodness must overrule absolute evil
Though thereís nothing worse than war.
Sometimes we have no alternative option
Except to kill or be killed as before.
The best of plans can go amiss
With uncertainties till the first shots are fired.
As generals plot their path toward victory
Itís up to the wounded, the fallen and tired.
Itís not how strong or athletic you are
That decides who is blessed to return.
Those who survive are a product of luck,
And our prayers and support theyíve earned.
War seems to peel the veneer off society
Exposing our villain within.
A crazy obsession to rule over others
By death, destruction and sin.
The mayhem of conflict is a ongoing scourge
Robbing man from intended glory.
The hinge of history swings in all directions
As the madness of war tells its story.
By Tom Zart
Soldier For The Lord
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