Through me they live
Through the sundry willows, and the vast fields of the earth,
lies the haunting image of many of our beloved fallen men.
Dandies in apparel but yet young boys in body for in their spirit,
rested the dutiful call to defend a wondrous nation again.
Their names bestow the honour of fight and their forgotten plight,
beholds the doleful memory of the bosoms of toiled mothers.
There over past yonder where the larks sing and the crickets chirp,
are the toilsome graves of our fallen heroes and brave soldiers.
There among the soil of yore to envision in the fields of yester,
the valiant souls that once treaded above these now hallow pavilions.
One would see beyond the vaward the clamour of the cannons afire,
and the lionhearted charge of the fierce and daring battalions.
Where soldiers once swathed with their wounds ere now dwell,
upon the vaward where so boldly wended their worthy souls.
Therefore their only wretched rue was to have to die so abruptly,
for the sake of the flag in which they carried like mulish mules.
Oh that day of ere a man swore that he would never see home anew,
and the nightmares of threadbare friends haunted him like rovers.
Amidst the blanched staid mist sounded the trumpets of victory,
to guide there onward the march of a hundred stoic martyrs.
Hence the colours of the fourteenth regiment was not to be played,
unless it was played there amongst the carnage within yeomanly.
By he who was a true survivor of that once long ago blustery war,
and one who had heeded the call to defend his nation’s glory.
Oh how peaceful and calm today is a mild and soothing summer day,
whence they are no men left to slay and there to strife against.
In front of one in these hollow grounds that lie before one whither,
are the souls of young boys who hitherto their voice you hear thence.
To witness the blood that they sheaded and the sweat they poured,
like moisten dewdrops trickling from yond the rusty shingles above.
If in death they have achieved celestial union with their creator,
then in harmony they shall dwell forever there like a turtledove.
To the world they are nameless though they are the epitome of men,
who as doughty brethren scurried into the realm of immortality,
Through me they live, through me, their names still live on,
for they bear the souls of brave men and the images of a tragedy.
Franc Rodriguez's Other Poems
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(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
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