« EelmineJätka »
FOLD away all your bright-tinted dresses,
Turn the key on your jewels to-day,
Braid back, in a serious way:
No more trifling in boudoir or bower;
To meet the stern needs of the hour!
Look around! By the torch-light unsteady,
The dead and the dying seem one. What! paling and trembling already,
Before your dear mission's 'begun ? These wounds are more precious than ghastly;
Time presses her lips to each scar,
As she chaunts of a glory which vastly
Transcends all the horrors of war.
Pause here by this bedside—how mellow
The light showers down on that brow! Such a brave, brawny visage! Poor fellow!
Some homestead is missing him now : Some wife shades her eyes in the clearing,
Some mother sits moaning, distressed, While the loved one lies faint, but unfearing,
With the enemy's ball in his breast.
Here's another; a lad—a mere stripling
Picked up on the field, almost dead, With the blood through his sunny hair rippling
From a horrible gash in the head. They say he was first in the action,
Gay-hearted, quick-handed, and witty; He fought, till he fell with exhaustion,
At the gates of our fair Southern city.
Fought and fell 'neath the guns of that city,
With a spirit transcending his years. Lift him up, in your large-hearted pity,
And wet his pale lips with your tears.
Touch him gently-most sacred the duty
Of dressing that poor shattered hand! God spare him to rise in his beauty,
And battle once more for his land!
Who groaned? What a passionate murmur
“In Thy mercy, O God! let me die !” Ha! surgeon, your hand must be firmer;
That grapeshot has shattered his thigh. Fling the light on those poor furrowed features;
Gray-haired and unknown, bless the brother ! O God! that one of Thy creatures
Should e'er work such woe on another !
Wipe the sweat from his brow with your kerchief;
Let the stained, tattered collar go wide. See ! he stretches out blindly to search if
The surgeon still stands at his side. “My son's over yonder! he's wounded
Oh! this ball that's broken my thigh.!” And again he burst out, all a-tremble,
“ In Thy mercy, O God! let me die !”
Pass on! It is useless to linger
While others are claiming your care;