Black Flag

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: War and Military  |  House: Booksie Classic
Black Flag
The year is 1862. The poem is based on no specific battle or brigade. The story is entirely made up, though similar things will have happened during the American Civil War - the war in which this is set. A Confederate Brigade are suppressed by deadly Union musket fire. The casualties are high, but both brigades are locked in mortal combat. Neither can retreat, and both are terrified. Morale is low, but the stakes are high.

Submitted: April 07, 2017

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Submitted: April 07, 2017



Oh, those mortal hours they did pass

Men grown, boys young, the bullet discriminated not

Cries of the dying, and soon to be, forever haunt the field

Both brigades were locked in fire, and neither would yield


Shots tore into bodies, clean cuts through the soul

The flesh blown out from their backs, blood spraying

Men now blind, for whom darkness has overcome

Defiantly, both brigades stand. Neither will run.


Men jolt once struck, keel, then fall

The wounded holler. The screams of war.

Officers cry, “Hold the line!”

But numbers are low; it’s a matter of time


The corpses pile higher as ranks are blown apart

Artillery fire shatters morale, men vanish on the spot

No more than a fine spray of blood, like rain

They’ll have felt not a thing. No idea, nor pain.


Union guns submerge in smoke, Confederate too

The brigades lose sight of each other,

Drowning in a white sea of blood

The commanders order “Fix bayonets”, for the firing is no good.


The dreaded words silence the field. Not one more shot.

A black flag emerges from the smoke, flying boldly over the soldiers.

It fights the smoke to be seen, while the men below hide.

The breath is taken from the dying, the last of which cried.


No quarter shall be given, to this treacherous foe

Every man among them will die

A rebel yell commences; the union tremble in fear

As, against tyranny, the black flag marches ever nearer


The Union brigade waits, reliant on only sound

The Confederate brigade marches, onward to Union ground.

Bayonets forward, to the beat of the drum, marching in time

Officers in front, swords drawn, holding the Confederate line.


The silence breaks as the charge is called

A volley is fired into the thick of the smoke,

Through which come Confederates, in a furious display

The Union form to late; now with all hell to pay

Bayonets tear though, ranks at a time

The cracks of the swords and bayonets

The fog seems to fall back down, and blanket the fight -

The Confederate charge, for Confederate rights.


When, finally, the last drop of blood is spilled

When, at long last, the last soldier is killed

And the screams of death are so prominently resounding

And, but one thing among the dead, is left standing.



The black flag.

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