John Marr and Other Poems eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 61 pages of information about John Marr and Other Poems.
And man rebounds whole aeons back in
    nature. 
Hail to the low dull rumble, dull and dead,
And ponderous drag that shakes the wall. 
Wise Draco comes, deep in the midnight roll
Of black artillery; he comes, though late;
In code corroborating Calvin’s creed
And cynic tyrannies of honest kings;
He comes, nor parlies; and the Town,
    redeemed,
Gives thanks devout; nor, being thankful,
    heeds
The grimy slur on the Republic’s faith
    implied,
Which holds that Man is naturally good,
And—­more—­is Nature’s Roman, never to be
    scourged.

CHATTANOOGA November, 1863

A kindling impulse seized the host
  Inspired by heaven’s elastic air;
Their hearts outran their General’s plan,
  Though Grant commanded there—­
  Grant, who without reserve can dare;
And, “Well, go on and do your will,”
  He said, and measured the mountain then: 
So master-riders fling the rein—­
  But you must know your men.

On yester-morn in grayish mist,
  Armies like ghosts on hills had fought,
And rolled from the cloud their thunders loud
  The Cumberlands far had caught: 
  To-day the sunlit steeps are sought. 
Grant stood on cliffs whence all was plain,
  And smoked as one who feels no cares;
But mastered nervousness intense
Alone such calmness wears.

The summit-cannon plunge their flame
  Sheer down the primal wall,
But up and up each linking troop
  In stretching festoons crawl—­
  Nor fire a shot.  Such men appall
The foe, though brave.  He, from the brink,
  Looks far along the breadth of slope,
And sees two miles of dark dots creep,
  And knows they mean the cope.

He sees them creep.  Yet here and there
  Half hid ’mid leafless groves they go;
As men who ply through traceries high
  Of turreted marbles show—­
  So dwindle these to eyes below. 
But fronting shot and flanking shell
  Sliver and rive the inwoven ways;
High tops of oaks and high hearts fall,
  But never the climbing stays.

From right to left, from left to right
  They roll the rallying cheer—­
Vie with each other, brother with brother,
  Who shall the first appear—­
  What color-bearer with colors clear
In sharp relief, like sky-drawn Grant,
  Whose cigar must now be near the stump—­
While in solicitude his back
  Heaps slowly to a hump.

Near and more near; till now the flags
  Run like a catching flame;
And one flares highest, to peril nighest—­
  He means to make a name: 
  Salvos! they give him his fame. 
The staff is caught, and next the rush,
  And then the leap where death has led;
Flag answered flag along the crest,
  And swarms of rebels fled.

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Project Gutenberg
John Marr and Other Poems from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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