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Posts Tagged ‘William Tecumseh Sherman’

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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Atlanta

One year, a present Sherman gave
To Lincoln for the Yule
To cheer the dour president
In his long arduous rule.

It was the perfect offering,
And not from ease or thrift,
For William gave to Abraham
Atlanta as a gift.

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

 

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(after visiting with Lincoln before the fall of Richmond)

Of all the men I ever met
None other comes to mind
Who had both greatness and the grace
In such amount combined.

I once looked down on him in scorn;
I judged him on a word.
And looking back, I understand
Such judgments are absurd.

You ask, “What is the difference?”
I am ashamed to say.
I judged him when I knew him not;
I know him well today.


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

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At eighty-four, he stood in winter’s cold
And rain to honor foe who died as friend.
“Put on your hat,” he worriedly was told.
“No, he would not wear hat at my life’s end.”

Pallbearer, later he caught cold that day;
Pneumonia was the price of honor paid.
And like the one he helped to put away,
In weeks, with honor, was in his grave laid.

A score and six years after civil war,
The one who lost Atlanta by retreat –
Gray’s General Joe Johnston suffered more
At Sherman’s hands and grave: a last defeat.

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It was at the Union’s General Sherman’s death that Johnston, as a pallbearer, stood bareheaded in New York’s February winter, caught a cold, and died from pneumonia.

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

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