Gettysburg Parable

After his speech the people
who’d assembled to imbibe

the mulled wine of his baritone
went home and tried to rebuild

everyone, while the President
click-clacked back to Washington

wreathed in the steam of engines
he’d unleashed then stalked

like a gaunt apostrophe across
the street to telegraph Ulysses

Grant to “please come get this
business over with” before his

hair made wisps of smoke like Little
Round Top and his bristling jowl

grew sunken into Devil’s Den
chewing its hallowed dead.

“Expect worse”
Grant’s reply read.

Ed Granger lives in Lancaster County, where he was raised to love both books and theoutdoors. Since returning to PA in 1993, he has volunteered and worked for healthcarenonprofits. His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Little Patuxent Review, TheBroadkill Review, Potomac Review, Roanoke Review, Free State Review, Naugatuck RiverReview, The Sow’s Ear Poetry Review, and other journals.