Friday, May 30, 2014

“Unforgotten” by Annie M. Toohey (1891)



Softly o'er the fragrant breezes

        Waft those strains of joy again

That triumphantly resounded

        O'er the battlefield and main,

And we reverently listen

        To their treasured tones once more,

Ling'ring nigh those fallen heroes

        'Neath the willows, as of yore.

Ever faithful, olden comrades,

        Whose brave eyes are dimmed by years,

Still around those clay-shrines gather,

        Shedding forth their fervent tears;

Vanished hours again recalling,

        When but war-clouds' cruel shade

Darkly fell o'er scenes of carnage—

        Human discord sadly made.

Not an echo of dissension

        Mars their peaceful strain to-day;

Be they voiced by lips e'er loyal

        Unto ranks of Blue or Gray,

For they know the flowers cover

        And the silv'ry waters flow

O'er the precious scars of martyrs—

        Bitter stride made long ago.

Some 'mid tangled weeds are hidden

        Far away in nameless graves;

Others lie 'neath surging currents

        Of the restless, flowing waves.

Yet the rays of yonder heaven

        With their lustre pure and bright

Softly shade a fadeless glory

        E'er above them day and night.

Would again we might behold them

        Mounted on their gallant steeds!

Marching on to battle-glory!—

        Sailing where our banner leads!

Radiant in gleaming armor,

        Swords aglow on ev'ry breast,

All our own beloved soldiers!

        Bravest, noblest and the best!

Tho' our footsteps back must wander

        From their flag-strewn graves again,

Where in nature's tender bosom

        'Neath the flowers they are lain,

Yet our hearts shall never leave them

        Tho' eternities elapse,

Nor fond Mem'ry o'er their ashes

        Ever cease to sound the taps!


Troy Daily Times. May 30, 1891: 4 col 2.

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