Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘rebels’

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.

————————————————————————

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/

————————————————————————–

© Dennis Allen Lange, 2020.

Read Full Post »

Lincoln inaugural

It looked dim for Lincoln’s election
To second term till changed complexion.
Sheridan o’er Early won;
Atlanta burned till it was done.
The army assured Abe’s selection.

———————————————-

© Dennis Allen Lange, 2019.

 

Read Full Post »

(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.)

30122008953_f5b6f4c4ae_o

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.

30673881481_0c5271ba51_o

 

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?

————————————————————-

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.

————————————————————-

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

Read Full Post »

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.

————————————————–

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

 

Read Full Post »

civil war deaths

When brother North fought brother South
Oft in the other’s home,
The bodies fell on battlefields
In woods and fields and loam.

The red plague on the battlegrounds,
Spread by the buzzing bees,
Was still but half the total brought
At rest, by dread disease.

—————————————————-

https://www.phil.muni.cz/~vndrzl/amstudies/civilwar_stats.htm

—————————————————

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

Read Full Post »

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.

——————————————————–

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

Read Full Post »

Jeb Stuart, in the midst of war,
Rode by his family.
While on his horse, he kissed his wife –
Goodbye in brevity.

Mere two days later, he was dead,
Kissed by a sniper’s bee.
It was a single touch that took
Him to eternity.

Of Stuart, Sedgwick later said,
“He ruled the cavalry.
He was the greatest officer
That we will ever see.”

The bullet, kiss, the spoken praise
Were each a single tick,
Upon the ages’ lumb’ring clock,
From one life that we pick.

How quick a stroke a brush may make
And change fore’er a hue
On which the wind will blow all day
And fall, in mornings, dew.

——————————-

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

Read Full Post »

With Stonewall Jackson hurt, but not yet dead
Though surgeon-fit for that, his final bed,
Lee heard the cutting news and said aright,
“He’s lost his left arm but I’ve lost my right.”
And when the life of Jackson ebbed away
Like timid tides retreating from a bay,
Robbed Lee, at Gettysburg, was then alone –
He’d lost his eyes and ears beneath a stone.

————————————–

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

Read Full Post »

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.

Read Full Post »

At Griswoldville, Blue’s Howard left behind
Rear guard to watch as his men moved away.
Some Rebels sniffed them out as hounds will find
The wily fox who is the hunters’ prey.

In close formation, Gray made its attack
With courage, but without a bit of art,
Straight toward the waiting guns which drove them back,
To charge twice more, and failing, then depart.

The Union soldiers went into the field
As victors, cheering loudly with broad smiles.
But what to them had till then been concealed
Froze lips – the fallen Gray in many piles.

As Southern cause was close to its last breath,
Youth and the age-ed for the war were grist.
Six hundred lay, in agony or death,
So green, these Gray, that Blue troops rarely missed.

At Griswoldville, one viewed the grisly scene
And grieving, said, “There is no God in war.”
And thinking of a mother’s mournful keen,
He said, “War’s what the devil wishes for.”

—————————————

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

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »