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POEM AT GETTYSBURG.

89.

where he is; this is my last hope, this will forever dispel my anxiety. I tremble to think of it, yet

Enter HATTIE, R.

HATTIE. I have good news for you, Amy. The story is a long one, but I will try to be brief. (Tahes both Amy's hands in her own.) I have been to see the Colonel of the regiment, and have learned that Mr. Branton is still alive, still loves you. He has been on detached service much of the time and none of your letters have reached him. I overheard the Misses Sanders and Blanchard talking this morning, and learned from them that they had intercepted both your letters and his. 'Twas a deep, dark plot, but I rejoice with you to-night, that their scheme was fruitless and that Mr. Branton is still true.

Amy. I cannot tell you, Hattie, the deep, pure joy that fills my soul. Yes, I am happy to-night, and I can truly say that I forgive the plotters their dreadful wrong, and now leave them to make their peace with God.

CURTAIN.

POEM READ AT THE FOUNDING OF GETTYS

BURG MONUMENT.

COLONEL C. G. HALPINE (MILES O'REILLEY).

As men beneath some pang of grief,
Or sudden joy will dumbly stand,
Finding no words to give relief
Clear, passion-warm, complete and brief
To thoughts with which their souls expand,
So here to-day, those trophies nigh,
No fitting words our lips can reach ;'
The hills around, the graves, the sky,
The silent poem of the eye,
Surpasses all the art of speech !

To-day a nation meets to build
A nation's trophy to the dead,
Who, living, formed lier sword and shield,
The arms she sadly learned to wield,
When other hope of peace had fled ;
And not alone for those who be
In honored graves before us blest,
Shall our proud column, broad and high,
Climb upward to the blessing sky,
But be for all a monument.

An emblem of our grief as well
For others, as for these, we raise ;
For these beneath our feet who dwell,
And all who in the good cause fell,
On other fields in other frays.
To all the self-same love we bear
Which here for marble i memory strives ;
No soldier for a wreath would care,
Which all true comrades might not share,
Brothers in death as in their lives.

On Southern bill-sides, parched and brown,
In tangled swamps, on verdant ridge,
Where pines and broadening oaks look down,
And jasmine weaves its yellow crown,
And trumpet creepers clothe the hedge,
Along the shores of endless sand,
Beneath the palms of Southern plains,
Sleep everywhere, hand locked in hand,
The brothers of the gallant band
Who bere poured life though throbbing veins.

Around the closing eyes of all,
The same red glories glared and flew;
The hurrying flags, the bugle call,
The whistle of the angry ball,
The elbow-touch of comrade true,
The ski:mish fire, a spattering spray,

POEM AT GETTYSBURG.

91

The long sharp growl of fire by file,
The thick’ning fury of the fray
When opening batteries get in play,
And the lines form o'er many a mile.

The foeman's yell, our answering cheer,
Red flashes though the gathering smoke,
Swift orders, resonant and clear,
Blithe cries from comrades, tried and dear,
The shell-scream and the sabre stroke,
The volley fire, from left to right,
From right to left, we hear it swell,
The headlong charges, swift and bright,
The thickening tumult of the fight,
And bursting thunders of the shell.

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A moonlit silence, deep and fresh.
These upturned faces, stained and pale,
Vainly the chill night dews assail;
Far colder than the dews their flesh.
And flickering far, through brush and wood,
Go searching parties, torch in hand.
Seize if you can some rest and food,
At dawn the fight will be renewed,
'Sleep on arms ! " the hushed command.

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They talk in whispers as they lie In line, these rough and weary men. “ Dead or but wounded ?" then a sigh ; "No coffin either ?. Guess we'll try To get those two guns back again.” “We've five flags to their one, oho! “ That bridge! 'Twas not there as we passed;" " The Colonel dead ? It can't be so. Wounded, badly, that I know, But lie kept saddle to the last.”

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“ Be sure to send it if I fall;"!

Any tobacco ? Bill, have you ? A brown-hair’d, blue-eyed, laughing doll;" “Good-night, hoys, and God keep you all." "What, sound asleep ? Guess I'lı sleep too." “ Aye, just about this hour they pray For dad.” Stop talk pass the word ;" And soon as quite as the clay Which thousands will but be next day, The long-drawn sighs of sleep are heard.

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Oh! men, to whom this sketch, though rude,
Calls back some scene of pain and pride ;
Oh! widow, hugging close your brood,
Oh ! wife, with happiness renewed,
Since he again is at your side;

POEM AT GETTYSBURG.

93

This trophy that to-day we raise
Should be a monument for all,
And on its side no niggard phrase
Confine a generous nation's praise
To those who here have chanced to fall.

But let us all to-clay combine
Still other monuments to rise ;
Here for the dead we build a shrine,
And now to those who crippled pine
Let us give hope of happier days.
Let homes of those sad wrecks of war
Through all the land with speed arise ;
They cry from every gaping scar,
“Let not our brother's tomb debar
The wounded living from your eyes.”

A noble day, a deed as good,
A noble scene in which 'tis done,
The birth-day of our nationhood,
And here again the nation stood,
On this same day its life renown.
A bloom of banners in the air,
A double calm of sky and soul,
Triumphal chant and bugle blare,
And green fields spreading bright and fair,
As heavenward our hosannas roll.

Hosannas for a land redeemed,
The bayonet sheathed, the cannon dumb;
Passed as some horror we have dreamed,
The fiery meieors that here streamed,
Threat’ning within our homes to come.
Again our banner floats abroad,
Gone the one stain that on it fell;
And bettereil by his chast’ning rod,
With streaming eyes uplift to God,
We say, “ He doeth all things well.”

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