Home > Uncategorized > George Shepard Burleigh: Martial Heroism

George Shepard Burleigh: Martial Heroism

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Anti-war essays, poems, short stories and literary excerpts

American writers on peace and against war

George Shepard Burleigh: When shall the crystal fount of Peace wash out the hideous stain of blood?

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George Shepard Burleigh
Martial Heroism

An eye, bloodshot and still, with angry glare
Threats Heaven – encaverned in the shaggy side
of brows that slope back to the steeps of pride;
His hard cheek scorns alike the lightning-glare
And Mercy’s sunshine, poured availless there;
Clenched teeth, and rigid lips, and nostrils wide,
As of a war-horse, and the pitiless gride
Of his armed heel on bosoms red and bare,
Betray the spirit of that iron frame,
Whose hand is welded to the steel it lifts.
Blood gurgles down the steep tracks of his fame,
From human clay, piled high in livid drifts.
Rash men adore him, and his image fold
In reverent arms, and crown with purple and gold .

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