Can We Make It On Time

By Jerry L. Duncan Jr.

The pagers go off, calling us out.
The dispatcher gives the address, with a loud shout.
I jump out of bed as fast as I can.
Grab my shoes and my keys as they page us again.
I go out to my truck, plug in the dash light.
Cause somewhere in town is a fire I must fight.
Wiping the sleep from my eyes, I see a bright glow in the distance. A policeman yells over the radio “Code 3, I need assistance”
He said there is screaming, coming from inside.
I think to myself, someone is trapped, but alive.
The pain they must feel, I can’t imagine the scare.
I see the station up the road, the chief’s already there.
I pray to God “Please let us get there in time,
To save an unknown life, Lord if you must, instead take mine.”
I speed up a little faster, but still driving safe.
Still praying to God that I won’t be too late.
I finally get to the station, put on my turn out gear.
The chief starts the fire engine and yells “We’re outta here!”
The sirens sound off, the red strobe are so bright,
I pray once again, “Lord watch over us tonight.”
I suit up for action putting on the S.C.B.A.
The chief makes the comment “Boys the Devil wants to play!”
We arrive on scene, not ever thinking one time,
“Why am I doing this?” or “Why do I put my life on the line?”
As we observe the silence and think “this person is dead.”
All of a sudden I see the shadow of a small head.
Looking real hard, trying to figure out what it is.
Oh dear Lord, it can’t be. It’s just a small kid.
Then all of sudden the head moved, “this kid’s still alive!”
So I try to reassure her by yelling “Everything’s gonna be alright!” I always said “I’d die if it would save another life.”
But never once did I think that it could happen tonight.
I run to the front door, Kick it open and run in.
Praying once more, “God, we can’t let the Devil win.”
Crawling on the floor, moving slowly toward the crying.
I noticed a strong smell and loud hissing. Oh No! It’s a gas line!
I knew I had to hurry so I got up and ran towards the cry
I found that little girl, she could barely open her eyes.
The smoke was thick and very hot and getting ready to flash.
I took off my jacket, wrapped her in it and gave her my air mask.
I heard a firefighter outside say, “The roof’s coming down,
if they are getting out alive, they better get out right now.”
I grabbed the young girl as if she were a football,
tucked her in close and ran to the window.
The chief ran up and took her from my arm
My other one’s broken, but at least she is out of the way of harm. Then I remembered the gas line. So I too climbed out the window. And sure enough, that gas line did blow.
The explosion knocked me down, but I got right back up on my feet.
Took no more than 3 steps, then I hit my knees.
Through my blurred vision, I watched that little girl,
with her mom and dad all crying, having a face with a smile.
She then walked over to me and grabbed me by the hand.
She said in a soft sweet voice “Thank you Mr. Fireman.”
We put out the fire, got ready to go home one more time.
I helped roll the hoses, thanking God that nobody died.
And thank you Dear Lord for letting us be on time.

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