Posts Tagged ‘gray’


I think that I’ve now lost a dear friend
Who’s now past the point where he can mend.
They took him away
All feeble and gray
For young folks to care for till the end.


photo by Michal Zacharzewski at https://www.rgbstock.com/photo/n3hzesC/Old+man


© Dennis Allen Lange, 2020.



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The gray-haired man on the iron-gray horse
Toward Pennsylvania led his gray-clad force.
And a Union lass in the Union land
Said, “I wish he was ours – he’s handsome and grand.”


*A Union lass did say that.

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

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The Civil War etched two men into history,
Head, shoulders o’er the rest, two of our nation’s best –
A president and gen’ral: Lincoln, Lee.

Men came to recognize their pedigree;
They were a different breed; both in their roles could lead.
The Civil War etched two men into history.

One led the North and let the slaves go free;
One led the armed in gray, a fox in ev’ry way –
A president and gen’ral: Lincoln, Lee.

Less Lincoln, North might cave and bend the knee;
Lee knew what Grant would do, as though the future knew.
The Civil War etched two men into history.

One set a course midst scorn like scalding tea;
The other sat astride the route the Blue would ride –
A president and gen’ral: Lincoln, Lee.

Men fell; some soared, and blood became a sea
As two great men arose midst all a nation’s woes.
The Civil War etched two men into history,
A president and gen’ral: Lincoln, Lee.


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

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The white-tailed deer I feed seem mostly gray,
Though nothing makes my mind to think that way
Until one comes along of diff’rent shade
And side by side comparison is made. 

Once-spotted summer-born, now autumn fawn
That in these last few weeks has crossed my lawn
Is diff’rent from the rest in brass and hue.
Like first-sight love, I saw her shade and knew. 

She sometimes come to feed without her doe.
That’s so unlike the others that I know,
For nature births a fawn with legs that fear
And take to flight instead of coming near. 

By what I first exclaimed, she’s now addressed.
Brown Baby is thus diff’rent from the rest.
I do not love her less because of that,
Or more as if her hue’s a thermostat. 

If all my deer were brown I would not mind
For white tails, warm, soft eyes would be their kind.
And if no brown one ever came my way,
It would not matter if they all were gray.

What matters is that they would be my friend
And not turn tail and run away as wind,
And that they do not war as neighbors war.
One’s color is not cause to love them more.


The photo is mine. Brown Baby is the fawn in
the upper left.


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

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At Chancellorsville, the light was all but lost,
Except the stars that peered out o’er the dead
Who had no twinkle left; their holocaust
A battlefield which was, this night, their bed. 

The General rode out into the night
To scout himself the land before his men.
Returning, friendly fire from blinded fright
Stung thrice the Bull Run Battle’s paladin. 

He could not walk the way because he bled
His strength from shoulder and a useless arm.
A stretcher manned by friendly men instead
Moved him, but one drop caused his ribs some harm.

The arm went first; that seemed to be enough –
A sacrifice acceptable to Death.
But Death said no, in voice grim and gruff,
And Jackson’s light was lost in his last breath. 

Though Chancellorsville was its great victory,
Black draped the Gray in mourning o’er the cost
That none more keenly felt than Robert Lee
Who knew that for his own eyes light was lost. 

And like the life of Jackson ebbed away
So, too, did Southern hopes begin to fade.
And at the end, the General and the Gray
Less life and cause, were in a grave both laid.



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



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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!


© 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



* 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/


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



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Still sits the school-house by the road,
A ragged beggar sunning;
Around it still the sumachs grow,
And blackberry-vines are running.

Within, the master’s desk is seen,
Deep scarred by raps official;
The warping floor, the battered seats,
The jack-knife’s carved initial.

The charcoal frescoes on its wall;
Its door’s worn sill, betraying
The feet that, creeping slow to school,
Went storming out to playing!

Long years ago a winter sun
Shone over it at setting;
Lit up its western window-panes,
And low eaves’ icy fretting.

It touched the tangled golden curls,
And brown eyes full of grieving,
Of one who still her steps delayed
When all the school were leaving.

For near her stood the little boy
Her childish favor singled;
His cap pulled low upon a face
Where pride and shame were mingled.

Pushing with restless feet the snow
To right and left, he lingered; –
As restlessly her tiny hands
The blue-checked apron fingered.

He saw her lift her eyes; he felt
The soft hand’s light caressing,
And heard the tremble of her voice,
As if a fault confessing.

“I’m sorry that I spelt the word;
I hate to go above you,
Because,” – the brown eyes lower fell, –
“Because, you see, I love you!”

Still memory to a gray-haired man
That sweet child-face is showing,
Dear girl! the grasses on her grave
Have forty years been growing!

He lives to learn, in life’s hard school,
How few who pass above him
Lament their triumph and his loss,
Like her, – because they love him.

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