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Engine 432

Welcome to the stories/poems page! Below are some very famous, and some very unknown, poems from all over the world. Some celebrate those who risk thier lives for others, and some lament the lost lives of those in duty. Please look throught them, and remember who is out there everyday putting thier life on the line for your safety.

White Squad

Battling The Beast-
Wearing blue coveralls, they sit sometimes for days, laughing, eating, joking...waiting for one sound, a siren that transforms them. They abandon their armchairs for overcoats of canvas and for rubber boots, their armor heavy and hot. Instead of trading jokes they relay directions, and orders, and shout reports of the status of the enemy-- "FLAMES ARE VISIBLE" Fear and excitement grip the hearts of the freshest rookie to the oldest veteran as they jump into their steel Trojan horses perfect from polishing, washing, checking over and over-- they pray that they have made no mistakes. The driver navigates the craft through the city streets he knows as well as his family, dodging when possible those that get in the way, hoping those he can't avoid will see him first, the spot the enemy from blocks away-- the phoenix rises far above the trees, licking the sky. They arrive at the scene, and again the battle cry is heard-- "FLAMES ARE VISIBLE" Smoke fills the air and their lungs as they approach, hoses snaking, crisscrossing, coming to life as they surge with water from yellow and red hydrants that suddenly become grotesque heads of Medusa. They kick open the doors, rubber from their boots leaving a print melted by the heat, and trickling over bubling paint. Orange liquid flames roll through the building, slithering up and over the walls, breathing in and out with each puff of air. With swords of water they charge and the war begins. They battle--nine or ten against one-- seemingly great odds. But the nine soldiers will win, emerging from the battlefield victorious as they always do, and eventually, they'll retire to their armchairs, thanking God that this time nobody was hit by the enemy fire...
-unknown author

The Fire Fighter-
Sirens sound! He awakes with a start and hastily grabs up his clothes, dressing on the run, as he has so many times before. Thumping of footsteps, motors churning, directions yelled, chaos! TOTAL CHAOS! Or so it seems...yet, within seconds, dispatch...they are on their way, racing down the street, sirens at ear-splitting pitch. Meanwhile, his mind dashes to other nights-days of grueling, heartbreaking tragedy-ridden, heat-searing work. And he cries to the depth of his soul, "WHY DO I CONTINUE ?" Loaded with nets, roof cutters, ladders, axes, erc. they don air masks as they arrive. It is another bad one. Flames are shooting everywhere, lighting the darkest of night with an eerie glow. Screaming, a man and woman cluthc to each other in panic. Nothing but PURE Intuition, or so it seems, takes The Firefighter through collapsing beams, up the stair, past flaming bedrooms and into a tiny closet to the side of a smoke filled bedroom. He quickly gathers two squirming bundles in his arm, darts to the nearest window and throws them to the waiting nets below...He leaps. Restrained no longer, the man and woman bound for the nets. The Firefighter, weakened, hears sounds that are so far away, of a little dog's whimper, happy cries and excited voices. Then, an explosion rocks the very ground upon which he lay. Through the pain of a broken arm, he feels a little dog licking his face, and slowly opens his eyes, the depth of his soul is touched, he will never be the same, he needs no thank you's, because he now knows the very reason "WHY HE CONTINUES"; for within her happy parents' arms..... a child smiles.
-unknown author

A Fire Fighter's Pledge - I promise concern for others. A willingness to help all those in need.
I promise courage - courage to face and conquer my fears. Courage to share and endure the ordeal of those who need me.
I promise strength - strength of heart to bear whatever burdens might be placed upon me. Strength of body to deliver to safety all those placed within my care.
I promise the wisdom to lead, the compassion to comfort, and the love to serve unselfishly whenever I am called.
-unknown author


I wish you could see the sadness of a business man as his livelihood goes up in flames or that family returning home, only to find their house and belongings damaged or destroyed.
I wish you could know what it is to search a burning bedroom for trapped children, flames rolling above your head, your palms and knees burning as you crawl, the floor sagging under your weight as the kitchen beneath you burns.
I wish you could comprehend a wife's horror at 3 A.M. as I check her husband of forty years for a pulse and find none. I start CPR anyway, hoping against hope to bring him back, knowing intuitively it is too late. But wanting his wife and family to know everything possible was done.
I wish you could know the unique smell of burning insulation, the taste of soot-filled mucus, the feeling of intense heat through your turnout gear, the sound of flames crackling, and the eeriness of being able to see absolutely nothing in dense smoke--"sensations that I have becomed too familiar with."
I wish you could understand how it feels to go to school in the morning after having spent most of the night, hot and soaking wet at a multiple alarm fire.
I wish you could read my mind as I respond to a building fire, `Is this a false alarm or a working, breathing fire? How is the building constructed? What hazards await me? Is anyone trapped?' or to an EMS call, `What is wrong with the patient? Is it minor or life-threatening? Is the caller really in distress or is he waiting for us with a 2x4 or a gun?'
I wish you could be in the emergency room as the doctor pronounces dead the beautiful little five-year old girl that I have been trying to save during the past twenty-five minutes, who will never go on her first date or say the words, "I love you Mommy!", again.
I wish you could know the frustration I feel in the cab of the engine, the driver with his foot pressing down hard on the pedal, my arm tugging again and again at the air horn chain, as you fail to yield right-of-way at an intersection or in traffic. When you need us, however, your first comment upon our arrival will be, "It took you forever to get here!"
I wish you could read my thoughts as I help extricate a girl of teenage years from the mangled remains of her automobile, `What if this were my sister, my girlfriend, or a friend? What were her parents' reactions going to be as they open the door to find a police officer, HAT IN HAND?'
I wish you could know how it feels to walk in the back door and greet my parents and family, not having the heart to tell them that you nearly did not come home from this last call.
I wish you could feel my hurt as people verbally, and sometimes physically, abuse us or belittle what I do, or as they express their attitudes of, "It will never happen to me."
I wish you could realize the physical, emotional, and mental drain of missed meals, lost sleep and forgone social activities, in addition to all the tragedy my eyes have viewed.
I wish you could know the brotherhood and self-satisfaction of helping save a life or preserving someone's property, of being there in times of crisis, or creating order from total CHAOS.
I wish you could understand what it feels like to have a little boy tugging on your arm and asking, "Is my mommy o.k.?" Not even being able to look in his eyes without tears falling from your own and not knowing what to say. Or to have hold back a long-time friend who watches his buddy having rescue breathing done on him as they take him away in the ambulance. You knowing all along he did not have his seat belt on--sensations that I have become too familiar.
Unless you have lived this kind of life, you will never truly understand or appreciate who I am, what we are, or what our job really means to us.

-Randell Broadwater, Firefighter/EMT-A Some lines written by Jason Kopacko and Brad Schargorodski

The Fireman's Wife-
This is dedicated to my wife. Without her love and support I would not be able to be a Volunteer Firefighter.
The table's set, the meal's prepared, our guests will soon arrive. My husband once more disappears with a hope of keeping a child alive. While waiting at home again alone, our plans having gone awry. My first impulse is merely to sit down and cry. But soon again I realize the importance of my life when I agreed to take on the duties of being a fireman's wife. While there are many drawbacks, I'll take them in my stride The gusting winds and raging flames may be his final fate, But with God's help I can remain my fireman's faithful mate.
-unknown author

A Voice in the Dark

Crying in the darkness,
My sobs break the silence.
Alone with my pain,
No one helps me,
No one forgives me

I hear noise but I am still alone
I scream, my pleas are unanswered
Why am I alone?

Is this world void of life,
Void of life I scream,
No response
Void of hope perhaps

Still all I can hear are my own thoughts
I sleep, I cry, I moan, I tremble
Why must I be the one to console myself,
Why do I have to torment myself
The only faith I have left is in my sanity which is gone

I can see people, why don't they look at me
Can't they hear me, can't they care
Their ignorance drives me deeper into my seclusion
I cry myself back to sleep,
My dreams, my thoughts, my world.

They don't belong in my dreams,
I don't belong in their world.

-Londa Baker

A nursery school teacher was delivering a station wagon full of kids home one day when a fire truck zoomed past.
Sitting in the front seat of the fire truck was a Dalmatian dog.
The children fell to discussing the dogs duties. "They use him to keep crowds back," said one youngster.
"No," said another, "hes just for good luck."
A third child brought the argument to a close, "They use the dogs to find the the fire hydrant"

Last updated 3/13/99 at 9:00 p.m.

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