Known Just to God and Me



This moving song was penned by Ellis Craig and sung by Alan Sandeman.

Rows and rows of snow white stones, no names upon their face.
Thousands more who went to war and left no earthly trace.
One unknown for all unknowns, Canada for thee,
I am that unknown soldier, known just to God and me.

Mother country’s call to war awakes a young man’s dream,
Escape from toil on barren soil to a uniform’s esteem.
No thoughts of mothers losing sons, just of a chance to roam,
A year to spare, go over there, defeat the Hun – come home!

Dark train rolling through the night toward the eastern sea.
Young soldiers seeking glory, not knowing what will be.
Last sight of home, across the foam, where the unleashed dogs of war
Will soon lay bare no glory there, just mud and blood and gore.

In Vimy’s tunnels warriors stand awaiting dreaded dawn,
Each one a knight in someone’s eyes, each one a front row pawn.
The hand of fate soon to decide the minutes or the years
Left to the souls who leave dark holes to face their greatest fears.

Comrades all around me fall, each fought his private war.
With will and might we take the height where others failed before.
Amid the sleet , the roar, the heat, the chaos all around,
I do not feel the bullet strike that drives me to the ground.

Buried in a blanket shroud, forgotten and alone,
“A Soldier of the Great War” inscribed upon my stone.
But then I’m chosen to return, across the same grey sea,
Back from the hell of shock and shell, back from the Ridge Vimy.

I lie in state and share my fate with mourners passing by.
A moment spared for one who dared, a tear in every eye.
From where I came and my own name known just to God and me,
In a hallowed space in a state of grace I will spend eternity.

And once a year again I hear the cadenced cannons boom,
And feel the love from those above, the poppies on my tomb.
A country’s grief for her lost sons who kept her strong and free.
The Canada I died for – upon the Ridge Vimy.

Rows and rows of snow white stones, no names upon their face.
Thousands more who went to war and left no earthly trace.
One unknown for all unknowns, Canada for thee,
I am the unknown soldier, known just to God and me.

I am the unknown soldier, known just to God and me.

 

Reference: Ellis Pringle Craig, November 2018