The following poem was written by Andy Fleming of Barriere after one of his buddies was killed in Holland during Word War II.
It was winter time in the Netherlands
Back in nineteen forty four.
We were waiting for the big spring offensive
That was going to end the war.
Joey and I were on night patrol
Around our particular camp.
Seems to me there was snow on the ground,
But it wasn’t too cold yet, just damp.
So we’d pull on our old Army Great Coats
And we’d pick up our rifles and walk.
I was a pretty good listener
And Joey sure did love to talk.
He came from a farm on the prairies,
Gosh, I can’t even recall his last name.
Everyone just called him Joey.
Didn’t matter much in this game.
He said “Here have a cigarette Buddy,
It will help kill the taste of that stew.
I guess we’re not s’posed to smoke out here”.
I said, “Thanks Joey, don’t mind if I do”.
He said, “Gee, maybe next year at this time
I’ll be chasing cows out of the hills.
I wonder if my old dog will still know me”
I said, “Yea Joey, I reckon he will”.
“You know what I think I miss the most back there?
(Gosh I used to wander and roam)
There was always a light in the window,
No matter what time I came home.
It’s been over four years now since I left,
But I’ll never forget what they said.
“We’ll keep a light in the window son,
And blankets turned down on your bed”.
He said, “I’m really not mad at those fellers
That are shooting at us out there,
They’ve got their orders just the same as us,
To me it just doesn’t seem fair.
I bet their folks got a light in the window,
Just hoping they’ll come home too.
I bet they wish this dumb war was over”.
I said, “Ya Joey, I reckon they do”.
Well a snipers bullet found Joey the next day,
I remember the time and the place.
And I am sure he saw his little light in the window
Cause he died with a smile on his face.
Then I sat and cursed wars and the people
who start them
And leave them for people like us,
Who weren’t mad at anyone to begin with
And didn’t want any part of their fuss.
And I thought of the boys who had all
gone before him.
And the ones who were still gonna go.
I said to myself, “There wouldn’t be no dumb wars
If everyone was like Joe.”