As often happens, reenacting inspires visions.  The thoughts and images come out as poetry.  I’m taking a break from recounting the 150th Gettysburg Reenactment to share a new poem that came to me after reliving the bloodiest battle ever fought on American soil.


The Dead rose up from the killing field

And reformed in company fronts.

They dutifully stood in silent ranks

And waited for their orders to come.

 Sepia tombstone pg 39A fellow of theirs addressed the muster

And thanked them for their service.

The country owed them a debt of gratitude

For the lives they had given were precious.

They had been in this dimension so long

And had not been released to go home.

He promised them their sojourn was over

And they were returning from whence they had come.

Looking out on the assembly

He felt such sadness and pride.

These men had given their all for a cause

That had been slated to die.

 Sepia Grave Yard pg 45They stood at attention in the field

Over which they three times advanced.

Their life’s blood had flown freely

But they didn’t really stand a chance.

So goes the story of the foot soldier

In countless battles and wars.

They are called on to attack

Although scared to their soul’s very core.

The speaker took one last glance

At all the heroes of old.

He raised his standard and it glowed

As he watched all the host sudden go.

 Hyla Jane pg 59Their long wait was now over

The curtain could now descend.

They were transfigured to the Other Side

To be with family and friends.

VDutton ~ July, 2013

All Materials © 1992 – 2013 and Property of Vernon Dutton
No part of this may be copied or used without written consent
of Dutton & Associates, LLC and Time Travelers Publishing.

About Civil War Reflections

Vernon has been a Civil War buff since childhood, but had been inactive in Civil War history for over two decades. However, in the early 1990s his interest was rekindled after watching Ken Burns’ “Civil War Documentary” on PBS. He particularly became interested in the Battle of Antietam (Sharpsburg) and decided to learn more about this epic struggle.
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