Meditations On Atlanta BattlefieldComposed while sitting under the shade of a willow tree, where Rebel shells were bursting fearfully near him, so close as to suggest that grim Death might have an eye on him, and finished just as an order came to "fall in" to charge the enemy's works, July 22, 1864, at Atlanta, Georgia.
Happy the man whose lot is cast
Where shell and bullets never flies;
Who at his home eats rich repast,
And never for a hard tack sighs.
Who never out on picket goes
Where rebel bullets fly around;
But home on feather beds repose,
While blue coat boys sleep on the ground.
Who never have to stand all night
And watch for rebels in the woods;
While rain pours down 'till broad daylight,
Well soaking his blue woolen goods.
What a blessed thing for the lucky man
Who can escape these ills of life;
And live at home on the good old plan
And eats his meals with his loving wife.
Who takes his children on his knee
And tells them all about the war;
And hopes the time may never be
When drafts his happiness may mar.
Happy the man who never marched,
Day after day on the Rebel track,
But walks the street with collar starched,
With never a knapsack on his back.
Who eats his meals three times a day,
And never turns his hands to cook;
Who takes it easy every way
'Cause greenbacks fill his pocketbook.
He sits in his cozy old arm chair
And reads the news about the war;
And runs his fingers through his hair,
And thanks good fortune he's not "thar."
He sits at church in cushioned pew
While his pastor is rebuking sin;
While Sunday inspection all in blue
And bright guns with our Colonel win.
Rejoicing over glorious news
And victories by our soldiers won;
He never, never has the blues,
Oh, no, he never bears a gun.
But when this "cruel war" is o'er,
And victory won by Boys in Blue;
Our country will forever more
Give honor to the brave and true.
For every hardship they endured,
Posterity will give them praise;
For all their liberties secured
They'll give us thanks in coming days.
Then envy not this man of ease,
His name is not on Honor's Roll;
These battle fields he never sees,
No patriot glow is in his soul.
Then let me be the Boy in Blue,
Fighting for the Stripes and Stars;
Let it be said that I was true
And fought in Freedom's glorious wars.
Triumphant o'er Rebellion's host,
I'll shout for Freedom's happy land;
And while I live 'twill be my boast
That I was with her Patriotic Band.
From: War Songs Poems and Odes by R.W. Burt
Peoria Illinois 1909
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