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The Obsequies of Stuart.
WE could not pause, while yet the noontide air Shook with the cannonade's incessant pealing, The funeral pageant fitly to prepare―
A nation's grief revealing.
The smoke, above the glimmering woodland wide That skirts our southward border, in its beauty, Marked where our heroes stood and fought and died For love and faith and duty.
And still, what time the doubtful strife went on, We might not find expression for our sorrow; We could but lay our dear, dumb warrior down, And gird us for the morrow.
One weary year agone, when came a lull,
With victory, in the conflict's stormy closes, When the glad Spring, all flushed and beautiful, First mocked us with her roses
With dirge and bell and minute gun, we paid
No wailing trumpet and no tolling bell,
No cannon, save the battle's boom receding, When STUART to the grave we bore might tell, With hearts all crushed and bleeding.
The crisis suited not with pomp, and she, Whose anguish bears the seal of consecration, Had wished his Christian obsequies should be Thus void of ostentation.
Only the maidens came, sweet flow'rs to twine Above his form so still and cold and painless, Whose deeds upon our brightest record shine, Whose life and sword were stainless.
They well remembered how he loved to dash Into the fight, festooned from summer bowers; How like a fountain's spray his sabre's flash Leaped from a mass of flowers.
And so we carried to his place of rest
All that of our great Paladin was mortal; The cross, and not the sabre, on his breast, That opes the heavenly portal.
No more of tribute might to us remain
But there will come a time when Freedom's martyrs A richer guerdon of renown shall gain,
Than gleams in stars and garters.
I claim no prophet's vision, but I see
My rescued country, glorious and free,
I hear from out that sunlit land, which lies Beyond these clouds that gather darkly o'er us, The happy sounds of industry arise
In swelling, peaceful chorus.
And, mingling with these sounds, the glad acclaim
In some fair future garden of delights,
Where flowers shall bloom and song-birds sweetly
Art shall erect the statues of our knights
In living bronze and marble:
And none of all that bright, heroic throng,
Shall wear to far-off time a semblance grander— Shall still be decked with fresher wreaths of song, Than this beloved commander.
The Spanish legend tells us of the Cid,
And thus our STUART, at this moment, seems
A realm of light and glory—
And sometimes, when the silver bugles blow,
Is there any News of the War?
"Is there any news of the war?" she said. "Only a list of the wounded and dead," Was the man's reply, without raising his eye To the face of the woman standing by. "Tis the very thing I wish," she said"Read me a list of the wounded and dead."
He read her the list; 'twas a long array
Of a gallant youth who fought so well, That his comrades asked, "Who is he, pray?" "The only son of the Widow Gray,"
Was the proud reply of his Captain nigh.
"Well, well, read on. Is he wounded?-quick!