POETRY: A GHOST IN ATLANTA

A Ghost in Atlanta


A group of women stood before
The graves of their lost sons;
There came a sad and gentle voice,
“I mourn what you’ve not done.”

“I’ve been dead since the Civil War;
Near here, was where I died;
A city burned, and I was killed -
It matters not which side.”

“But two years after my war ceased,
Some women came to pray;
They knew that Northern mothers wept
For sons as much as they.”

“So then, they took their flowers -
No great ado or fuss;
They prayed and left their blossoms here,
To cover all of us.”

“Poor silly, foolish women -
Who weep and cry and moan;
Some mothers in another land
Have also lost their own.”

“Until you learn to join with them -
And share each other’s pain;
There will be wars tomorrow -
And your sons have died in vain.”

- by John B. Denson

Note: It is a historical fact that two years after the Civil War some women of Atlanta put flowers on the graves of soldiers of both sides.  It is also a fact, several wars later, we seem to have learned nothing from it.  JBD Originally published in TAM, Spring 1994


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