I saw the ghostly riders
As the bugles gladly blew,
Near a statue to the suffering
Silver ships of clouds across the blue.

I heard the sound of muskets
As the brave man took his flight,
Then the moaning of the wounded
On a terrible starless night.

The surgery, without the numbing
A bloody bandage on wounded leg,
In every war in history
They try to make the prisoner beg.

"Mans inhumanity to man"
I've seen it with my own eye,
The strong man brutalized
The sick man left to die.

But as the bugles faded
The joy of freedom filled my soul,
It makes the wars worth fighting
Whatever the awful toll.

So when you hear the quitter
explain his failing way,
Just remember ghostly riders
And why the bugles blew that day.

Copyright 1998, by Mark A. Smith, Major, USA, Retired

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