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a poem about Gettysburg

Discussion in 'Battle of Gettysburg' started by wilber6150, Nov 29, 2009.

  1. wilber6150

    wilber6150 Brigadier General Moderator

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    I found this poem in the book Poetry of the Civil War edited by John Boyes..
    Its called Gettysburg by James Jeffery Roche

    There was no union in the land,
    Though wise men labored long
    With links of clay and ropes of sand
    To bind the right and wrong.

    There was no temper in the blade
    That once could cleave a chain;
    Its edge was dull with touch of trade
    And clogged with rust of gain.

    The sand and clay must shrink away
    Before the lave tide:
    By blows and blood and fire assay
    The metal must be tried.

    Here sledge and anvil met, and when
    The furnace fiercest roared,
    God's undiscerning workingmen
    Reforged His people's sword.

    Enough for them to ask and know
    The moment's duty clear-
    The bayonets flashed it there below,
    The guns proclaimed it here:

    To do and dare, and die as need,
    But while life lasts, to fight-
    For right or wrong a simple creed,
    But simplest for the right.

    They faltered not who stood that day
    And held this post of dread;
    Nor cowards they who wore the gray
    Until the gray was red.

    For every wreath the victor wears
    The vanquished half may claim;
    And every monument declares
    A common pride and fame.

    We raise no altar stones to Hate,
    Who never bowed to Fear;
    No province crouches at our gate,
    To shame our triumph here.

    Here standing by a dead wrong's grave
    The blindest now may see,
    The blow that liberates the slave
    But sets the master free!

    When ills beset the nation's life
    Too dangerious to bear,
    The sword must be the surgeon's knife,
    Too merciful to spare.

    O Soldier of our common land,
    'Tis thine to bear that blade
    Loose in the sheath, or firm in hand,
    But ever unafraid.

    When foreign foes assail our right,
    One nation trusts to thee-
    To wield it well in worthy fight-
    The sword of Meade and Lee !

    James Jeffery Roche
     

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  3. Elennsar

    Elennsar Colonel

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    A most excellent poem, and many thanks for sharing it.
     
  4. Leah's Choice

    Leah's Choice Cadet

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    What Elennsar said. :smile:
     
  5. Copper 83rd PA INF

    Copper 83rd PA INF Sergeant

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    Thank you for sharing that. I've never seen that poem before. Very nice.
     
  6. M E Wolf

    M E Wolf Brigadier General Moderator

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    Dear Wilber6150,

    I agree it is an excellent poem.

    Thank you very much for sharing it with CWT. :smile:

    Respectfully submitted,
    M. E. Wolf
     
  7. wilber6150

    wilber6150 Brigadier General Moderator

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    I found it in a bargain store for a $1.99, some of them are very touching.. I will post more when I am able...If anyone has a Ollies's clearance store near them, the book section is worth checking out, quite a few civil war titles, also got Don Troiani's book on American battles for $10 and its usually $50.. My wife had to drag me into the store and then turn around and drag me back out.. lol
     
  8. Ed Hill

    Ed Hill Cadet

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    Me and brother Bobby had never spent a day apart, so when duty called we both answered, nearly broke mama’s heart.
    We were just a couple of rough country boys with more than our share of nerve that followed General Lee into Pennsylvania to a place called Gettysburg.
    For two days two great army’s battled to a draw, the third day was the cruelest fight I ever saw. I was carrying the colors with Bobby right behind, when General Pickett gave the order, “time to do or die.”
    Gettysburg, cuts like a razor on my soul. Gettysburg carries more pain than I can hold. Back then we were restless and bold, me and Bobby never thought about growing old.
    The Union boys were waiting on hill behind a wall of stone. Across half a mile of open ground we would have to make it on our own. I straightened the colors, we all squinted in the July sun, and then we fixed our eyes upon that wall and marched straight into their guns.
    We were all moving forward with 100 yards to go, when thunder burst inside my chest and I went down real slow. If I was alive or dead Bobby couldn’t tell, but he picked up that Rebel flag and screamed the Rebel Yell.
    Nobody knows how it ended because no one saw him fall, but they saw Bobby waving the Stars and Bars on top of the Union wall. When I recall that day my blood runs cold, you see my little brother Bobby was only 16 years old.
    Gettysburg, cuts like a razor on my soul. Gettysburg carries more pain that I can hold. Back then we were restless and bold, now I’m the one, the one that’s growing old.
     
  9. wilber6150

    wilber6150 Brigadier General Moderator

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    Thank you for posting that very nice....
     
  10. Ellsworth avenger

    Ellsworth avenger Sergeant Major

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    Excellant book, great for the front room bookcase. Enticed me to obtain sheet music, for some of the songs ,to bang out on the piano.
    I get to play and sing to the grandkids; They think I'm Chopin:veryhappy
     
  11. unionblue

    unionblue Brev. Brig. Gen'l

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    Mr. Hill and Mr. Coffey,

    Thank you for posting two of the most excellent poems I have ever read concerning Gettysbug.

    It is much appreciated.

    Sincerely,
    Unionblue
     
  12. Ellsworth avenger

    Ellsworth avenger Sergeant Major

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    Forgot to say Thankyou for both poems.
    Wilbur ;I paid the publishers price when it came out,so that price produced an "ouch"
     

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