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Posts Tagged ‘Confederate’

salient

At Spotsylvania in ’64,
I fought and somehow lived to fight some more.
I fought near very center of the front –
The Bloody Angle of the salient,
A fingernail that tore, and torrent bled –
From wounded Blue and Gray and from the dead.

The Angle was the likely weakest spot,
Which both sides knew, so armies formed a clot,
With wave and wave of Blue prepared to send,
And Gray entrenched at all costs to defend.
I fought there and its horrors know too well;
Yet you will think it bloody lies I tell.

So massive was the steady charge of Blue,
For twenty hours we could not subdue,
Or stop the penetration of our line
Till Blue and Gray did equally combine
With shots close range and fighting hand to hand –
A horror only Satan could command.

The terror that we had to stay alive
Fueled strength to make the weary strive
Against exhaustion of our flesh and soul
To try and keep our lives, keep body whole,
Not like the thickened oak* that, riddled, fell
By all the bullets flying in our hell.

Rain reigned and trenches softened into mud
Soaked by the falling water, flowing blood.
The mortal blows were given face to face
And wounded fell among them in that place.
Five deep the bodies were, dead or alive,
While we fought on above them to survive.

I sob to tell you of this ghastly day:
The Blue, still charging, and we standing Gray,
Had fought from dawn and still fought toward the night
And trampled dead and wounded out of sight!
Both armies killed men with their hands and feet,
The nightmare that my nightmares still repeat.

I fought there and its horrors know too well;
Yet you will think it bloody lies I tell.

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The battle at the salient was a 200 yard wide stretch.

*Federal fire was so heavy and some over the confederate troops in trenches that an oak tree two feet in diameter was felled by chipping bullets.

https://ironbrigader.com/2014/04/22/union-soldiers-recall-fighting-mule-shoe-salient-spotsylvania-courthouse/

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© Dennis Allen Lange, 2020.

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john bell hood

Hood battered Sherman’s men to no avail,
Gave up Atlanta, fled, and forged a trail
To Tennessee, his thirty thousand worn
By war and miles, a cob with half its corn.
 

At Franklin, Union lines were fortified,
Which checked not John Bell Hood’s aggressive side.
As futile as the clapper ‘gainst the bell,
Hood hammered and six thousand Rebels fell. 

A dozen generals were dead or gone,
And fifty leaders more lay on the lawn.
But Hood was like a moth drawn to a flame,
And hemmed in Nashville with his army lame. 

Blue’s Thomas, turtle-like, took his sweet time,
Then poured forth from the city at his prime.
Gray’s west was flanked; the Rebel line was rolled,
And Hood was done, a story finished, told. 

Hood’s army’s head at Franklin was bereft.
Now, half of half was all that he had left.
Post-Nashville, fewer feet by far remained,
And Hood resigned, his honor ever stained.

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

 

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Confederate_Rebel_Flag

The Union soldiers heard and knew,
E’en if they could not see,
A tidal wave was rolling forth
To pound them dreadfully.

The Gray began their fearsome charge
With a blood-curdling yell.
Like Furies, they came screaming forth,
Like demons out of hell.

‘Neath Union blue, it tingled spines;
‘Neath caps, their hair would stand.
Relentlessly, the tide surged ‘cross
The narrow strip of land.

Today, the Rebel yell seems lost;
We have no certain sound.
For though they screamed into the past,
No echo does rebound.

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

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By Johnston led, Confederates
Were cats along the way
And crept up on the Union, Grant,
The unsuspecting prey

At Pittsburg Landing where they camped –
That’s not the name we know.
There, near a church called place of peace,
Was war – Oh, Shiloh! ohhh!

The unprepared were driven back;
Two miles of ground were lost –
And men! The South had gained that day
But Johnston was the cost.

The general, his many men,
And even more the foe
Had bled away the last of life
Near peace – Oh, Shiloh! ohhh!

Night fell and Grant, saved by the bell
(That is, by troops of Buell),
Though beaten badly would attack
The morrow with new fuel.

The first day was the Union’s ebb;
On Monday was its flow.
With greater force, they took the same
Two miles. Oh, Shiloh! ohhh!

The greater loss in men and land
Upon the second day
That balanced what the Union gave
Was suffered by the Gray.

Two thousand nearly, for each side,
Received a fatal blow.
And thousands more were casualties
For naught! – Oh, Shiloh! ohhh!

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© Dennis Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2016.

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A blue wave
Of Union soldiers
At the gray.

— 

Sides engage;
The fighting rages –
Red carpet.

— 

Then, the graves
Both Union, Rebel
Flower strewn.

photo by Phil Edon at http://www.rgbstock.com/photo/mXPElMW/Bluebell+woods

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* The haiku I write are lines of 3-5-3 syllables instead of 5-7-5.

See Haiku article here for explanation, if needed: https://thebardonthehill.wordpress.com/2011/08/08/haiku/

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© Dennis Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2015.

 

 

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