THE AMERICAN CIVIL WAR
In 1860 life was good Till its simpleness ceased one day. The North wished to save the Union While the South chose to break away. America was torn apart As six hundred thousand died. Throughout four years of total war Women without husbands cried.
The sad fact of the Civil War Is what was left at its end. Too many times, men's evil acts Destroyed both foe and friend.
The problem was, once it began There was no peace or compromise. Total victory must be proclaimed Before rage would leave men's eyes. Destroy all that helps the enemy Was the cry of either side. Anything to obtain victory As death on horseback did ride.
Black men dressed in old uniforms Became the Union's reserve. They fought and died for their freedom And their rights they earned and deserve.
Lifestyles would forever change For all who survived the war. It had ended as it began With sadness, misery and more.
Both sides prayed to the same God And spoke words from the Bible. The prayers of both were not answered For all involved were liable.
BLACK POWDER BRIDGE
A courier rider hands his papers to me They are instructions from Robert E. Lee. I am advised now is the time To stop the troop movement on the Rock Island line.
I muster my men and they load up the boats We powder our pistols and darken our coats. Traveling the currents, the sun slips from sight As brave men with a purpose have gathered to fight.
We capture a bridge before the moonrise The Yankees who are here shall soon feed the flies. The evil of war feeds on my brain As I light the fuse to destroy a train.
Above us a trestle of timber and tar As we pull our oars for a willowed sandbar. From the banks of the river; we watch it approach There's shadows of soldiers, in the windows of a coach. With a burst of bright yellow and a roar in my ear I hear them scream as they 're falling in fear. The river is boiling in steam, steel and stems Back home their families shall soon sing funeral hymns.
The one lone survivor was a red stallion stud I lassoed his neck, and freed him from the mud. As I ride in his saddle beneath the stars that shine I pray for forgiveness and some peace of mind.
War is a lesson we re eager to learn When man has that fever to murder and burn. Lord, please forgive me for what I have done For all those I've silenced were some mother's son.
THE FEVER OF FEAR
Cannons are bursting hot metal from the ground. Soldiers are looting and burning our town. The fever of fear rushes through my veins As too many Bluecoats jump from troop trains.
Smoke from hot barrels is swirling around As four thousand muskets volley their sound. All of my comrades have stopped a lead ball Most cry out, then stumble and fall.
Even the young lad who carried our flag Now he lies dead as he clings to that rag. Wagons with the wounded trail blood on the ground Death and destruction are easily found.
The Generals are crying 'cause they can't stand defeat But it's always the soldier who dies on his feet. Horse hooves are pounding on a bridge made of boards As the sunlight reflects from the blades of their swords.
Quickly I hide out in the roots of a tree Where the dirt has eroded and there's just room for me. After dark I sneak out with the cover of fog Then float down the river, as I cling to a log. Songs of their victory, ring out through the night While from the cold, muddy water, I see their firelight. It makes me remember my old country church Where the preacher spoke God's word from his holy perch. That the seed of all conflict began in a cave When man, like the wild wolf had to prove he was brave.
THUNDER IN THE GROUND
Cannons are bellowing from a ridge far away The battle lines are forming and there's little time to pray. Musket balls are pelting like hailstones from the sky I'm so full of fear cause I don 't want to die.
From beyond yonder hill comes a terrifying sound It's the music of the buglers and there's thunder in the ground. The fast-riding troopers have all drawn out their swords. They 're shouting and screaming as they charge up the gorge.
It's hard to believe how many make it through As they're hacking and shooting at the boys dressed in blue. Then come the soldier men who run upon their feet Every time I drop one, my heart skips a beat.
There's a storm on the ground made of death, dust and smoke My throat is so dry, I can 't help but choke. The fury of the battle is bound to settle down When most of the fighters lie dead on the ground. After dark, the stretcher-bearers are afraid to search around The wild hogs eat the wounded and I can 't stand the sound. Come dawn, we dig ditches for all the brave, lifeless men Then quote words from our Bible praying heaven lets them in.
When you chain the neck of a slave The other end fastens to you. Your heart and soul become corrupt And all which is evil you'll do.
No government shall exist for long Who's people are not really free. Though around the world there are those Who stay blind to how life should be. Any who must enslave others Will dwell in their own living hell After death, they'll join their master In that place from heaven he fell.
But till then we'll fight and resist Making them put their chains away. And those of us who may die first From heaven shall watch and pray
BROTHER AGAINST BROTHER
In the course of becoming officers The young men of West Point bonded like brothers. Till roomers of Civil War transformed friend to foe As many cadets chose to serve others.
Fifty-five of sixty major battles fought Were lead by graduates of the long gray line. Yankees and Rebels ravaged one another For to kill and plunder were virtues of the time.
Over six hundred thousand soldiers were consumed Not counting multitudes of population. Cities, farms and the countryside were laid to waste Before our Union was restored to a nation.
THE LITTLEST SOLDIER
Nine year old Johnny Clem who stood just four feet tall Ran away from Ohio to answer his country's call. He joined up with the Union and became a drummer boy Soon to prove the gun he wore was far more than a toy.
Armed with a sawed-off musket, cut down to just fit him He shot a Rebel horseman who tried to do him in. Awarded his sergeant's stripes and the silver medal His comrades offered him hot coffee from their kettle.
The newspapers of the North, gladly published his story Telling of the nine year old who earned his country's glory.
The moon is sky high And perfectly round As it highlights the beauty Of disputed ground.
Life is a journey Where the passage is free. After, there's judgment By the living and Thee.
Tomorrow's carnage We'll survive if we can. Death and dismemberment By the hand of man. Some will stumble With absence of breath. While others charge Into the face of death.
We'll race toward the battle And pray for the best Hoping somehow We pass God's test.
Their red and blue, ragtag flag stood out Against their dust covered uniforms of gray. Savagely we fought to kill our enemy As the battle raged on in the heat of the day
Volley after volley we put forth our blaze With thousands of led balls snapping flesh and bone. Blistering sweat rolled down every face As the tunes of war by bugles were blown.
There was a clanking sound of ramrods in barrels As each new minieball was loaded and fired. Some shot aimlessly into the smoke While others took aim at the worn and tired. Bullets were popping like the fourth of July Yet our enemy kept surging ahead. All at once they broke and ran off in groups Scattering as for the forest they fled.
From behind the protection of a stacked-stone wall The victorious cheered or just sat starring At all the bodies of friend and foe While for the wounded the surgeons were caring. Soon the war was over and I survived Despite it's brutality on trampled ground. From boy to man I was transformed Though, still in the night I hear its sound.
SONS AND DAUGHTERS OF WORLD WAR III
Our sons and daughters serve in harms way To defend our way of life. Some are students, some grandparents Many a husband or wife.
They face great odds without complaint Gambling life and limb for little pay. So far away from all they love Fight our soldiers for whom we pray.
The plotters and planners of America's doom Pledge to murder and maim all they can. From early childhood they are taught To kill is to become a man.
They exploit their young as weapons of choice Teaching in heaven, virgins will await. Destroying lives along with their own To learn of their falsehoods too late.
The fearful cry we must submit And find a way to soothe them. Where defenders worry if we stand down The future for America is grim.
Now's not the time to fight one another Or kiss our enemy's cheek. All through history it remains the same The strong enslave the weak.
May God continue to bless America Refusing evil, the upper hand. It's up to us to stay resolute Defending the liberty of Man.
In their new uniforms The young march off Not knowing who shall return. With a proud devotion They brandish their flag Leaving loved ones to wonder and yearn.
May we all be buried By all of our children Is an ancient tribal prayer. They're so easy to lose But so hard to forget Such a burden for a parent to bear.
Oh, the taste of victory Shall soon be forgotten But, never that which was lost. For those rows of white headstones In peaceful green fields Make it easy to tally the cost.
America has survived all attempts to destroy Knowing the cruelty of war And, we who remain Must help keep her free For those who can march no more!
By Conservative Poet Tom Zart Most Published Poet On The Web
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