Enlistment - Ulysses Grant

Life wasn't the best for me,
Ulysses S. Grant.
squeamish
superstitious
feminine I was,
I didn't think for a second
commanding was my calling
I hated West Point and just wanted to be with my wife.
I was a drinker.
An unlucky man who had failed to bring his family close to him
I didn't want to serve the mandatory 4 years of service,
I couldn't stomach blood
I always wanted steak well done.
I was born to a businessman who owned a tannery
I never wanted to work at my father's shop.

I was separated from my wife before I could marry her
I was carted off to serve in the Mexican-American war
it was wrong
it was only fought so the USA could expand slavery.
I missed her deeply. It ached so much to think of her
because i couldn't see her
I stayed in my post thinking how we would marry when i got back.

I finally went back to her after 4 long years
she birthed 2 sons in the next 6 years
and I was carted off again
I felt horrible.
I wanted to see her and my kids
I tried everything to get her closer to me
but nothing worked
I stayed stuck at Fort Vancouver
missing her more with every passing day.
I resigned because of accusations of drinking
and my behavior wasn't the best.

I came back and struck
an all time low.
I was desperate to support my family
I couldn't farm land given to me by my father-in-law
I couldn't land a job as a clerk or an engineer
I was reduced to selling firewood on the streets to keep us alive.
I went back to my father's shop.
Awkward.

The rebels shot at Fort Sumter.
I felt something new ignite in me
a feeling of patriotism
I must serve my country.
I can offer my experiences, yes...
with the help of an Illinois congressman I land a post commanding an unruly regiment
they are battle ready within a few months.

Shiloh was a disaster.
The casualties were my fault,
stress crippled me and migraines left me disabled.
I was demoted but later reinstated.
The war was later ours, and the Union had won.

I expected to retreat to my unlucky life
but full general I became,
overseeing military aspects of reconstruction.
I was elected president in 1868,
having no idea how to do my job
I had no political experience.

I was an honest man
but I did not appoint people of good character.
Scandals rocked my administration.

I finally retreated to my unlucky life.
My partner at the firm was embezzling money from investors.
The firm and I together went bankrupt.

Mark Twain published my memoirs.
They became American classics
Twain is still a good friend.
I rest in New York City
This is who I am.
Ulysses S. Grant.


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