Old Sailors' Almanac

THIS WEEK IN HISTORY

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TO ALL WHO SERVED

The sailor stood and faced his God which must always come to pass

He hoped his shoes were shining just as brightly as his brass.


“Step forward now, you sailor, how shall I deal with you?

Have you always turned the other cheek? To My Church have you been true?”


The sailor squared his shoulders and said, "No, Lord, I guess I ain't

Because those of us who stand the watch can't always be a saint.


I had to work most Sundays and at times my talk was tough,

And sometimes I've been violent, because the world is awfully rough.


But, I never took a penny that wasn't mine to keep...

Though I worked a lot of overtime when the bills just got too steep.


And I never passed a cry for help, though at times I shook with fear,

And sometimes, God forgive me, I've wept unmanly tears.


I know I don't deserve a place among the people here,

They never wanted me around except to calm their fears.


If you've a place for me here, Lord, it needn't be so grand,

I never expected or had too much, but if you don't, I'll understand.


There was a silence all around the throne where the saints had often trod

As the sailor waited quietly, for the judgment of his God.


“Step forward now, you sailor, you've borne your burdens well,

Walk peacefully on Heaven's streets. you've done your time in Hell.”