Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE UNION OF BLUE AND GRAY, by PAUL HAMILTON HAYNE

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

THE UNION OF BLUE AND GRAY, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: The blue is marching south once more
Last Line: Above the blue, across the gray.
Subject(s): Patriotism; Reconstruction (1865-1876)

THE Blue is marching south once more,
With serried steel and stately tread;
Their martial music pealed before,
Their flag of stars flashed overhead.
Ah! not through storm and stress they come,
The thunders of old hate are dumb,
And frank as clear October's ray
This meeting of the Blue and Gray.

A Phoenix from her outworn fires,
Her gory ashes, rising free,
Fair Charleston with her stainless spires
Gleams by the silver-stranded sea.
No hurtling hail nor hostile ball
Breaks through the treacherous battle-pall;
True voices speak from hearts as true,
For strife lies dead 'twixt Gray and Blue.

Grim Sumter, like a Titan maimed,
Still glooms beyond his shattered keep;
But where his bolts of lightning flamed
There broods a quiet, mild as sleep;
His granite base, long cleansed of blood,
Is circled by a golden flood.
Type of that peace whose sacred sway
Enfolds the Blue, exalts the Gray.

The sea-tides faintly rise afar,
And -- wings of all the breezes furled,
Seem slowly borne o'er beach and bar,
Dream-murmurings from a spirit world,
Through throbbing drum and bugle-trill
The distant calm seems deeper still --
Deep as that faith whose cordial dew
Hath soothed the Gray and charmed the Blue.

O'er Ashley's breast the autumn smiles,
All mellowed in her hazy fold,
While the white arms of languid isles
Are girdled by ethereal gold.
All Nature whispers: war is o'er,
Fierce feuds have fled our sea and shore;
Old wrongs forget, old ties renew,
O heroes of the Gray and Blue!

The southern Palm and northern Pine
No longer clash through leaf and bough;
Tranquillities of depth benign
Have bound their blending foliage now,
Or, tranced by cloudles star and moon,
Serene they shine in sun-lit noon.
Their equal shadows softly play
Above the Blue, across the Gray.

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