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go into action. As I was gazing at his animated resolute face, a shell burst near us and a fragment struck and tore the brim of his cap. He held it up to me, and said with a smile, while a shudder ran over my frame, “A near thing, wasn't it?” Again almost irresistibly came over me the wish to send him off that fatal field, to know whatever might befall that he at least was safe. So young, so gifted, so instinct with hope and spirit and gallantry, surely it was not natural that he should die. Death even could not touch him. He smiled in its very face. If he had shrunk from it, I think I would have felt it less. The wild impulse died away as I looked upon his uncovered head with a feeling of mingled admiration and despair.

Suddenly the enemy's fire slackens. Ours in its turn ceases. Measured by time-pieces, the cannonade has lasted two hours ; by sensations, two ages. And now we all feel that the time has come. The inactivity and suspense are over. I felt it myself as I drew a long breath, and I could see it in the countenances of those around

There was a look of absolute relief. The decisive moment had come at length. What remained was to die.

We all rose up.

There was a pressing down of caps upon foreheads, a tightening of belts, a general indefinable stir and murmur of preparation. Then came the order to charge. The division-commander rode along the line. He said nothing eloquent or pointed, he made no appeals to the pride or the patriotism of his troops, he uttered no word of encouragement. He simply said, "Soldiers, you see those heights before you. Well, I want you to take them.” Then there rose from the whole line a ringing cheer. “We'll do it, General,” was the response. This was all. Simple words, but not unbecoming the men or the occasion. So with the answer. There was nothing fine in the whole scene, that is, nothing dramatically high-wrought, effective, or telling. Eminently brave nations have very different ways of doing these things. This was the Virginia way. Then the division commenced its advance across the field at ordinary time, as regularly, as quietly, in as solid order as if on parade. I was engrossed by attention to my duties as captain of my own company, but still I had time to notice the cool precision with which the devoted band moved forward, as if on a holiday march. Graham was near me, his cheek flushed, his lips partes, his drawn sword in his hand. The instinct of command was apparent ; he seemed to lower above those around him. His whole figure was ennobled and elevated by the lofty spirit which animated him.

I turned hastily away, unable to bear the thoughts that rose within me at the sight, and at that moment the Federal artillery opened. Round shot, shell and canister poured into the devoted column, but it did not falter. Every moment the storm seemed to increase in fury. A great gap was made in my own company. A man fell close at my side ; another took his place, and the ranks closed up. In a moment he and the man by his side were both swept away.

As I repeated the words of command I wondered to myself whether I would live to complete the sentence, and I remember distinctly that I speculated as to whether the lips would finish the words after the head was off. Every moment I looked by instinct in the direction of Graham.


The ranks were thinned. I missed one familiar form after another, but he was still there, his countenance as bright and fearless as ever, the flush on his cheeks, the fire in his eye. But now his nostril was dilated and his lips compressed. Never a better man for the work before him, the beau-ideal of the leader of a forlorn hope.

We are advancing at quick time now; indeed, if we are much longer in getting to the enemy's works there will be none of us left to take them. I look over the ranks of my own company; more than half are gone, and the last discharge has made a frightful gap and covered me with the blood of the man next me. Poor fellow! I can see his hand clutch the earth convulsively as he falls. Graham is still up, bareheaded now, and waving his sword as we advanced at a double quick. I can see that there is blood on his sleeve, but whether his own or another's I can not tell. Now with a loud cheer we rush up the slope within a few yards of the enemy's guns. Then the musketry opens ; the artillery had been child's play to this. The leaden hail comes thick and fast, whole ranks sink down beneath it. We are going at a run now, and there is little opportunity to see or think of anything. A bullet enters my shoulder, but I hardly feel it. Even in that moment I look for Graham ; we are very near together now; he is in advance of all, straining every nerve as he climbs the ascent, his whole countenance indicative of intense eagerness, of invincible resolve. He is waving his sword over his head and encouraging his men ; the flag. bearer falls, he snatches the flag with his other hand and bears it on; it is down again, and he who held it, down too, the sword in one hand, the flag in the other. An instant ago and he was then ahead of all, cheering on the others, and now — well, I cannot stop to think or grieve; but if one life (since that day scarcely worth the keeping) could have saved his, it would have been freely given. As it is, my blood is turned to fire, my heart has but one consciousness, my eyes are blind to but one sight; we rush over the breastworks, we bayonet the gunners and seize the guns. I hear now the ringing cheer that went up from the few yet left alive. I had no heart to join in it, no thought but of going forward, no wish but to meet the enemy hand to hand. The works are taken and the enemy routed ; but as the smoke clears away we see another and stronger line of works, behind which stand heavy masses of reserves in waiting. Meanwhile on both flanks and in front the fire pours in ; we stand on the crater of a volcano. Men stagger blindly to and fro; they look for their comrades to form and charge, but there are none left. A sheet of fire is in their faces, a hail-storm of bullets is beating upon them. Oh for five thousand more! but for one thousand more! To perish thus in the very arms of victory, and yet with victory not secured! To see it slip from our relaxing grasp! To conquer and have none left to hold ! And then not to be able to keep what he had died to gain! To leave those from whom he had met his death in possession of what he had striven so hard to win! I looked desperately around for support. I was the only officer of my company left on the field; scarcely any of the men remained. The whole division was reduced to a mere handful; anything like order was impossible; no organisation could be maintained. However, I started forward; but just at that moment I was conscious of a sudden shock and a sharp burning sensation in my side. A gush of blood followed as I fell to the ground, a swimming of the head, a deathly sickness, a great darkness, and no more.

I need not tell you of my restoration to consciousness to find myself a prisoner; of the first dim agonising glimmerings of what had happened ; of the slow and gradual return of full recollection, and the leaden hopelessness that step by step, as I fought with my convictions, took possession of my soul. Somehow, from the time when I saw him fall, up to that at which I lost consciousness myself, I had not doubted that the worst had happened. Now the sense of my loss came back with lingering steps. Better to have had one sharp bitter pang of reawakening ; better never to have doubted than this slow but certain approach of despair. Personally I felt as if there was little left for me to fear further. The chances of war held nothing else like this in store for me.

Long afterwards, when I had returned to Virginia, I heard from one who was by his side when he fell, and performed the last offices of friendship, that at any rate his death must have been almost painless. He was shot through the heart; a bullet had previously pierced his arm, but that he did not seem to feel. Years have passed since he was brought back again to rest in the bosom of the land he had died in vain to save ; but I can never hear the word Gettysburg, nor see anything connected with it, but there comes before me with ghastly distinctness the vision of that bloody field, and the death-scene of the noblest and most gifted being I have ever known.




BRAVE young Poet, born in days of eld,

Dwelt ’mid the frozen Northlands; he beheld,
And wondering, sung the marvels of the ice,
The swirl of snow-flakes, and the quaint device
Wrought on the fir-trees by the glittering sleet;
And loved on stormy heights, cloud-girt, to greet
The gray ger-falcon towering o'er the sea;
To watch the waves, and mark the cloud drifts flee
Big with the wrath of tempests: yet his heart,
Soft as the inner rose-leaves of the Spring,

Rich with young life, and love's sweet blossoming,
Too soon, alas! from life and love did part:
Veiled was the fate that smote him ; unaware
What sudden, blasting doom had drawn so near,
A strange blight breathed upon him, and — he died !

On earth to die, in heaven be glorified, -
Such was the Minstrel's portion ; still he went
Through all the heavenly courts in discontent
And sombre grief, the pathos of his woe
Rising at times to such wild overflow
As forced its wailful utterance into song.

That passionate rush of music, the heart's wrong
Set to the sweetness of harmonious chords,
The All-Father, Odin, o'er the clash of swords,
And din of heroes feasting at the boards
Of loud Valhalla, heard : thereon, he sought
This lonely soul in highest heaven o’erfraught
With mortal memories. “ Wherefore lift'st thou here,''
The All-Father asked, “these measures of despair ?”
“Because my mortal Love,” the Poet said,
“With time grows gray and wrinkled; on her head,

So golden bright in youth's benignant prime,
Chill frosts of age have left their hoary rime ;
Her eyes are dimmed, her soft cheeks' rosy red
Hath with the flowers of many a spring-tide fled;
And so when Heaven shall claim her — ah ! the pain !--
I shall not know mine earthly Love again!”

To whom the God, “But doth she love thee still ?”
“ Her love, like mine, nor years, nor change can kill,”

The Minstrel answered : “Faith, a ceaseless shower,
Keeps fair and bright our love's immaculate flower."

“I loose thy heavenly bonds,- I bid thee go !”

The All-Father cried, “ And seek thy Love below !”

To earth he came : drear waste and flowery lea
Beheld his search 'mid fettered folk and free ;
Yet all his toils but brought the direful stress
Of lone heart-yearning, grief, and weariness,
Till hope died out, and all his soul was dark.

At last, when aimless as an autumn leaf
Borne on November's idle winds afar,
He roamed a sea-beach wild, by moon or star
Unlighted, in his dreariest hour of grief

And desolate longing, on his eyes a spark
Of tiny radiance through the clouded night
Flashed from a cottage window on a height,
Next the dim billows of the moaning main.

There broke a sudden lightning on his brain
Of prescient expectation,– then, before
Its glow could fade, he trod the cottage floor,
And saw in tattered raiment, wan and dead,
An ancient withered woman on a bed,
Of whom a crone, as shrunk almost as she,
Said, with drawn lips, and blinking wearily,—
“ Lo! here thine old Love! Hast thou come so far
To find how cares may blight us, death may mar ?”

As ebbs a flood-tide, so his eager breath
Sank slowly. “Oh, the awful front of death!"
He moaned. “ Yet wherefore shudder ? Thou, my Love,
Art precious still; nor shalt thou move above,
An alien soul, albeit no longer fleet,
Nor fair, thou roam'st through Heaven with tottering feet,
Bent, aged form, and face bedimmed by tears ;
I only ask to know thee, while the years
Eternal roll !”

He bids a last farewell
To this world's life, again prepared to dwell
On heights celestial, in whose golden airs
The heart, at least, shall shed earth's wintry cares,
And blooming, breathe the vernal heats of Heaven.

Twice ransomed soul! thou spirit that hast striven
With countless ills, and conquered all thy foes,
Rise with the might of morning, the repose
Of moonlit night, and entering Heaven once more -
Behold! who first doth meet thee by the door,
With smiling brow, and gently parted lips,
And eyes wherein no vestige of eclipse
From pain, or death, or any evil thing,
Lies darkly, but whose passionate triumphing,
In peace attained, and true love blessed at last,
Hath such rare joy and sweetness round her cast,
She seems an Angel on the heights of bliss,
And yet a mortal maid 'twere heaven to kiss !

To whom the Singer, in a voice that seems
Vague, and half-muffled in the mist of dreams :-
“ Art thou the little Frida that I knew,
So long - ah! long ago ? Thine eyes are blue,

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