Saturday, November 22, 2008

Til the Last Shot's Fired

Last weekend we caught up with some good old friends. We headed to a little venue in West Columbia. There we listened to Rob Crosby – who is a friend of our very good friend Dori. Rob was stellar. Folksy, country, approachable, real. His songs are the kind that touch me. It was just Rob and his guitar and an occasional chorus from the audience who knew and appreciated his songs. He peppered his banter with stories about his family, friends, old times, life and the writing process. I wouldn’t say exactly what his politics are since I don’t know him (I can guess though given what I know about his friends). However, he sings one song he wrote called Til The Last Shot’s Fired. It is a timeless, shameless anti-war song.




I was there in the winter of sixty-four
When we camped in the ice at Nashville’s door
Three hundred miles our trail had led
We barely had time to bury our dead
When the Yankees charged and the colors fell
Overton Hill was a living Hell
When we called retreat it was almost dark
I died with a grapeshot in my heart

(CHORUS)
Say a prayer for peace
For every fallen son
Set my spirit free
Let me lay down my gun
Sweet Mother Mary I’m so tired
But I can’t come home
Til the last shot’s fired

In June of 1944
I waded in the blood at Omaha’s shore
Twenty one and scared to death
My heart pounding in my chest
I almost made the old sea wall
When my friends turned and saw me fall
I still smell the smoke and taste the mud
As I lay there dying from a loss of blood

(CHORUS)
Say a prayer for peace
For every fallen son
Set my spirit free
Let me lay down my gun
Sweet Mother Mary I’m so tired
But I can’t come home
Til the last shot’s fired

(BRIDGE)
I’m in the fields of Vietnam
The mountains of Afghanistan
And I’m still waiting, hoping, praying
I did not die in vain

(CHORUS)
Say a prayer for peace
For every fallen son
Set our spirits free
Let us lay down our guns
Sweet Mother Mary we’re so tired
But we can’t come home
Til the last shot’s fired
Til the last shot’s fired



I saw a bumper sticker in Lexington a few weeks back. Perhaps you have seen it too. “Kill ‘em all. Let Allah sort them out.” 

Kill ‘em all.      All?      Under that was a sticker, which indicated that the truck’s owner is a former Marine. Is THAT patriotism? God, I hope not.

I think there are some who believe that if you are strongly anti-war that you are unpatriotic, un-American. I couldn’t disagree more. Is war patriotic? Is fighting and killing – American?! God, I hope not. To me, this is a VERY American song, a very patriotic song. Believing in a peaceful world and insisting on it as much as we can is patriotic – and Christian. What would Jesus think of collateral damage?

3 comments:

Pamela said...

These are the correct lyrics, (as opposed to those on the liner notes and posted on the internet), and thanks for a very nice blog. I appreciate what a courageous young officer said about the song at the ACM Awards...."Its not about the war, its about the warrior". That nails what Doug and I were writing about.
Rob Crosby

Pamela said...

These are the correct lyrics, (as opposed to those on the liner notes and posted on the internet), and thanks for a very nice blog. I appreciate what a courageous young officer said about the song at the ACM Awards...."Its not about the war, its about the warrior". That nails what Doug and I were writing about.
Rob Crosby

austin said...

This is by trace adkins and the west point glee club. Its not a anti war song its about remembering the fallen soldiers.