In Private Hercules McGraw: Poems of the American Civil War, poem by poem, Private McGraw, each poem’s speaker, shares with us his journey through the landscapes of the American Civil War. McGraw, a Confederate soldier and racist, steps into the War in order to assure that slavery will exist long enough for him to purchase a slave with hopes to impress his love, Martha. As McGraw treks through the blood and mire, experiencing both triumph and tragedy, he begins to transform into a man of peace and compassion – a man who no longer sees a black man or a white man; he simply sees a man – a fellow, a brother.Early praise for Private Hercules McGraw:
S. Thomas Summers’s beautiful expose on the human condition in wonderful, flowing prose that is as naked as man and as stark as war. Most importantly, the poetry within demonstrates how that human condition evolves when a person is forcibly faced with the realities of his changing beliefs and values. Everyone interested in America’s Civil War—student as well as scholar—will relish this poetic story of one man’s war and likely every reader will recognize himself/herself within its lines.
—J. David Petruzzi, author, historical advisor to television miniseries To Appomattox
In a series of poems reminiscent of Stephen Vincent Benet’s epic work John Brown’s Body, S. Thomas Summers tells us a tale of war, and the evolution of a feckless youth into a veteran deeply scarred by his experience who comes to recognize the universality of humanity.
—Joseph G. Bilby, historian, editor of New Jersey’s Civil War Odyssey
If anyone wants to know what it was like to be a soldier during our nation’s bloody Civil War, he/she should read Summers’s haunting poems. Summers gets right down there with the blood and the grunge to chronicle the life of a soldier who both survived and, in many ways, perished. These expertly written portraits represent both a poetic and historical triumph.
—Christopher T. George, author of Terror on the Chesapeake: The War of 1812 on the Bay, and editor of the Loch Raven Review
Purchase Private Hercules McGraw here: http://www.amazon.com/Private-Hercules-McGraw-Poems-American/dp/1937536149/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1339251059&sr=8-1&keywords=private+hercules+mcgraw
Private Hercules McGraw: Poems of the American Civil War is published by Anaphora Literary Press.