" Man's Noblest Poem is Man's Bravest Deed"
Say not we have no Poetry!
The nation’s daily life struggling ‘gainst adverse fate is in itself
a grand unwritten Epic!
See yon long line of fresh lipped boys forth with their Mothers’
prayers & blessings on their heads-
Forth they wish to meet in their green youth, the stern o’erwhelming
Shock of furious War!
Hear their defiant shout as the thro’ their ranks crashes with deadly
Force the hissing shell!
They rush to Death as to a Carnival! Cheap their lives when laid
Upon their Country’s Altar!
See the Veteran drowning the thought of home, of wife,
Of child, of household joys,
In the stern sense of patriotic Duty! What to him the Camp’s dis-
Comforts? Midst the pelting storm,
Beneath the burning Sun-Aye, pinched with cold & starved,
Unflinching he performs it
Hark to the trumpet call- “ To Arms”! See the long ranks of
Bristling steel, rank after ranm,
Seeming in endless lines, the foeman furious come. Calm he awaits
Them, Till at the word,
Sudden a lurid light breaks like the lightening’s flash along his
Then like a hound unleashed, with yell & cheer, whilst yet the
Eddies upon the morning breeze, See! See! Him charge the unbroken
Find ye no Poem here?
Enter with gentle step the darkened Hospital. Bend o’er each couch
Of pain-it holds a Wounded hero!
Hearst thou one murmur , one regret, for having thus in the full
Flush of manhood given their all
To shield their country from the tyrants sway? No! but from
Fevered lips rises the wish
To be once more in the full front of battle. Eyeing his maimed
Limb the wounded veteran
Sighs that n’eer again in the stern crash of arms can her confront
His hated foe!
See that noble matron smiling altho her heart strings burst
She bids her loved one go. Calmly she arms him for the fight
& with a firm endurance
Bears the unwonted weight of wearing care brought on by his
And tho at times faint, weary, almost heart sick, & well nigh
Crushed beneath the unwelcome burden,
Not one murmur, one complaint, escapes her.
Cheerly she writes him,
Let some sad thought of her, or of his loved ones in his distant
Weaken his arm when he confronts his country’s foes.
See yon lone mourner, of husband & of child bereft. She
Wears her grief as tho’ it were a robe of honour.
Looking up from the depth of her resigned woe she buries
In daily care for others
That great sorrow which else would eat & gnaw into her very
She simply says “ I gave them to my country” & passing on
Wears out her life
In ministering to those thrown by the chance of War upon
A bed of pain.
Call ye not that true Poetry?
Tis not in times like these when what we hold most dear,
Most sacred, our hopes, our passions, & our joys
Die in the full vigor of our manly strength, crushed by the
Juggernaut of War!
When ‘een our daily lives, by suffering made sublime, rise by
Self sacrifice to sacramental power.
Tis not now that me write poetry. Our lives are Poems
& in the record of brave deeds,
Of calm endurance, of patient fortitude, the legacy of Blood
We leave behind us,
Our Children yet shall find their noblest poem
CAE-Looing Glass- March 23rd, 1865
Copy the code below into your web page