It was Rifles, always Rifles (Poem)
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  1. #1

    It was Rifles, always Rifles (Poem)

    The young Marine was weary
    and he sought a little rest
    With his helmet for a pillow
    And his rifle on his chest.
    He has seen the gunships fire.
    He had heard the cannons roar.
    He had seen the Navy's power
    as he made his way ashore.
    Then he thought about his rifle
    And he found it rather small,
    With the gunships and the cannons
    It was nothing much at all.
    The efforts of a rifleman
    Meant little, it would seem.
    Then, as he slipped to slumber,
    He dreamed himself a dream.

    The man who stood beside him
    Held a musket in his hand
    And close around his neck he wore
    A heavy leather band.
    "When I was on Old Ironsides"
    The apparition said
    "There were cannonballs and cutlasses
    Wherever danger led.
    There were pistols too, and daggers
    At every fighter's side
    When the ships would come together
    On the rolling, heaving, tide.
    But when it came to boarding,
    With the battle fury hot
    It was Rifles, always Rifles
    That made the telling shot."

    The apparition faded
    And standing in its place
    Beneath a shallow helmet
    He saw another face.
    "When we were in the trenches
    In the wood they called Marine
    There were mortars, tanks and cannons,
    More than I had ever seen.
    But when the final charge was made
    To push the Germans back
    It was Rifles, always Rifles
    At the point of the attack."

    The face changed only slightly
    And the helmet stayed the same
    But the island that he spoke of
    Had a more familiar name.
    "They hit us very early
    On the day the war begun.
    On the wings of all their bombers
    We could see the Rising Sun.
    Our pilots and our gunners
    Who fought and fell at Wake
    Wrote a story full of glory
    That time can never shake.
    But when the enemy drew near
    To make his final reach
    It was Rifles, always Rifles
    That met him on the beach."

    There next appeared a shadow
    In a swirl of stinging snow
    And it breathed a fierce defiance
    And its eyes were all aglow.
    "In Fifty at the Chosin
    When the big guns couldn't talk
    And the First Marine Division
    Took a fighting, freezing walk,
    When all the world, except the Corps
    Had counted us as gone
    It was Rifles, always Rifles
    That let us carry on."

    The scene was changed to summer
    And the face was hard and lean
    And the tired eyes were fired
    With the light that says "Marine".
    "At Khe Sahn when they shelled us
    We were wrapped in rolling smoke
    And the thought of our survival
    Was a grim and ghastly joke.
    But when the waves came swarming in
    To finish the assault
    It was Rifles, always Rifles
    That called the final halt."

    There next appeared a General
    As solid as a tank
    With three stars on his collar
    to signify his rank.
    His stature and demeanor
    Were the military type
    And in his hand he carried
    A stubby little pipe.
    His jaw was squarely chisled,
    His eyes were clear and keen
    And his bearing left no question.
    He was all Marine's Marine.

    "The message they're conveying"
    The burly General said
    "Is that through our troubled history
    The rifles always led.
    We've had cannons, tank and mortars.
    We've had weapons by the score,
    We've had Battleships and fighter planes
    To complement The Corps.
    We've a most impressive arsenal.
    That's obviously true,
    But the final thrust for victory
    Has always been with you.
    It was Rifles, always Rifles
    When The Corps was sorely pressed
    And the rifle that you carry
    Must meet the final test.
    So sling that rifle proudly,
    For everything we do
    With mortars, tanks and cannons
    Is just an aid to you."

    The young Marine awakened
    And put the dream aside,
    Though now he clutched his rifle
    With a certain touch of pride.
    And then he chanced to notice
    That lying near his hand
    Was a stubby little pipe
    And a heavy leather band.


    author unknown


    I got htis from my Dad...one of the "Frozen Chosen"


  2. #2
    yellowwing
    Guest Free Member
    Outstanding!


  3. #3


    Ellie

    IN LOVING MEMORY OF MY LATE HUSBAND, SSgt Roger A. Alfano, USMC
    ONE PROUD MARINE
    1961-1977
    Vietnam 1968/69
    Once a Marine...Always a Marine

    https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1204617174

  4. #4
    That was truley awesome.I loved every word of it


  5. #5
    It clearly gets the message across why we are all a basic 03 first and later trained on the other stuff!!!


  6. #6

    Poem

    Outstanding Jinx, would be a hit if it could be put to music.


  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by hmckinley
    Outstanding Jinx, would be a hit if it could be put to music.
    Great Idea...too bad Johnny Horton isn't around anymore (or Sousa).


  8. #8
    I know who wrote that,
    it was Sergeant Stokes, 1st Marine Division during World War Two, Island of Saipan.

    Truly Beautiful,
    Truly.


  9. #9
    Toby Keith could probably put it to music.


  10. #10
    yellowwing
    Guest Free Member
    Its nice to revisit that great poem. Just last night I was trying to tell a ciivilian about what it is to be a Marine.

    Out numbered 8 to one we still would just not quit. How can any enemy deal with that?

    And to this day every swigning d*ck Marine lives up to that! Ooh-rahh!


  11. #11
    Sounds a whole lot like Rudyard Kipling!


  12. #12
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  13. #13
    OUTSTANDING! Thanks

    SF

    Dave


  14. #14

    Thumbs down

    Holy crap!!! Is the Lt. now a major?? Damn rank grabber!!! I can't believe it,and I don't!!!


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