'Union Solider Recounts the Burning of Atlanta'

by Andy HallUnion Solider Recounts the Burning of Atlanta

by S. Thomas Summers

A local boy said the smoke was darker
than the walls of a heifer's ass,

but Gen. Sherman strolled
right through it as if molded
from soot. The haze
gathered behind him
like the Reaper's cloak.

Hiking out, heat stabbed
our backs like bayonets;
Remember Atlanta boys,
the general barked.
Even hell's on our side.

From then on I assumed
I was marching
behind Satan himself.
Sin or not, I was pleased as pie.

S. Thomas Summers blogs original Civil War poetry at Lint in My Pocket—Artillery on the Ridge. Used with permission.

Presented by

Ta-Nehisi Coates is a national correspondent at The Atlantic, where he writes about culture, politics, and social issues. He is the author of the memoir The Beautiful Struggle.

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (and Why)

Cooking for yourself is one of the surest ways to eat well. Bestselling author Mark Bittman teaches James Hamblin the recipe that everyone is Googling.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Before Tinder, a Tree

Looking for your soulmate? Write a letter to the "Bridegroom's Oak" in Germany.

Video

The Health Benefits of Going Outside

People spend too much time indoors. One solution: ecotherapy.

Video

Where High Tech Meets the 1950s

Why did Green Bank, West Virginia, ban wireless signals? For science.

Video

Yes, Quidditch Is Real

How J.K. Rowling's magical sport spread from Hogwarts to college campuses

Video

Would You Live in a Treehouse?

A treehouse can be an ideal office space, vacation rental, and way of reconnecting with your youth.

More in Entertainment

From This Author

Just In