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(In the Civil War battle at Fredericksburg, Virginia, Burnside sent Union troops again and again across an open field toward the Southerners behind a wall on the Sunken Road and perched above on Marye’s Height. The Union was slaughtered before retreating, 13,300 casualties vs.4500 for the South.)

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The sunken road.  The Union attacked across open level ground from the right,
suffered many losses, and were repelled each time.  Marye’s Height (pictured below) is a steep hill to the left.  Confederate cannons fired down on the Union from there.

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Did you, with ease, your blue waves send
To beat the shore that would not bend,
To paint their blood upon the wall
They battered ‘gainst, that could not fall?

Did you e’er feel the bullet’s pain
So they would not roll forth again
To-ward the South perched on the height,
No chance to win within blue’s sight?

Did they give their brief lives in vain
So you’d not have to bear the pain
Of facing Lincoln’s pressure to
Press on and fight, or bid adieu?

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The pictures are mine, taken a couple of years ago to a trip to Virginia where I
saw 5 major Civil War battlefields including Fredericksburg.

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© Dennis Allen Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2017.

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Frontispiece to a c. 1825 edition of Childe Ha...

Frontispiece to a c. 1825 edition of Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Childe Harold’s Farewell To England

Adieu, adieu! my native shore
Fades o’er the waters blue;
The night-winds sigh, the breakers roar,
And shrieks the wild sea-mew.
Yon sun that sets upon the sea,
We follow in his flight;
Farewell awhile to him and thee,
My native land – Good-night.

A few short hours and he will rise
To give the morrow birth;
And I shall hail the main and skies,
But not my mother earth.
Deserted is my own good hall,
Its hearth is desolate;
Wild weeds are gathering on the wall;
My dog howls at the gate.

Come hither, hither, my little page!
Why dost thou weep and wail?
Or dost thou dread the billow’s rage,
Or tremble at the gale?
But dash the tear-drop from thine eye;
Our ship is swift and strong;
Our fleetest falcon scarce can fly
More merrily along.

“Let winds be shrill, let waves roll high,
I fear not wave nor wind:
Yet marvel not, Sir Childe, that I,
Am sorrowful in mind;
For I have from my father gone,
A mother whom I love,
And have no friends, save these alone,
But thee – and One above.

“My father blessed me fervently,
Yet did not much complain;
But sorely will my mother sigh
Till I come back again.” –
Enough, enough, my little lad!
Such tears become thine eye;
If I thy guileless bosom had,
Mine own would not be dry.

 

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