And They March

And they march into the bloody haze
Of gray and blue, of smoke and sky
Lead in the air, flesh on the grass
And they march, swallow and blink, take aim
Crack sounds the thunder of one in the hundreds.
No thoughts;
Only fear and resolve. Only weak and weary muscles.
Only blinking back sharp tears
For our brothers. Our brothers!
Those were our brothers.
Brothers in gray and brothers in blue
Now lying dead on the ground, moist with blood-
Now lying dead, our brothers.
What, when the deafening voices of cannon and man
Are silenced? What, when the foggy field awakens
In the dew of a new sun? When the shreds of what
Yesterday was like are cooled in the night, forgotten-
What, then? Will the fiery passion of yesterday's war
Still burn in the hearts of the living? Will the cause
Remain worthy? Or will questions crawl in?
Or will wonderings stab doubt in desperate minds?
No thoughts;
Tomorrow may again bring zeal or not.
Today is the moment of courage in the bloody haze
So they steel their bodies and minds and eyes
And they march.

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