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72. ‘76. from my window. ‘61.

by M. H. Cobb.
Outward from the dusty city, far beyond the bustling streets,
Through the hazy atmosphere, quivering with the summer heats,
I am gazing where the heavens bend to touch the valley's rim,
And the farmer's humble cottage seems a spectre, pale and dim;
Where the roseate, fragrant clover, where the yellowing harvest grew,
Where June flowers and tender grasses treasured up the jewelled dew--
On those glowing fields and meadows war has set its iron heel,
And the eye is pained and dazzled by the deadly gleam of steel.

In the grove and leafless forest gleams the many-tented camp,
And the russet fields are shaken by the dull and measured tramp
Of a mighty host of freemen, true of heart and strong of limb--
Men who learned to love their country from their mothers' cradle-hymn!
From their pleasant Northern firesides, from their children and their wives,
Come they to redeem the nation, if it need be, with their lives!
Leavened by the martyr spirit, lo, in eager hosts they come!
Never were such legions marshalled in the palmy days of Rome!

Think they of our birth-time struggle?--how our fathers gathered then
From the fields and from the workshops — few, but stern, determined men!
Freedom's champions were fewer, but their hearts were strong and true,
And their pulses coursed as madly when the trump of battle blew;
Freedom's workers were not many, but their arms were tried and strong,
And their souls, less kindly nurtured, chafed as sorely under wrong.
Grand old days of inspiration! Do we witness their return?
Does their deathless love of freedom in our hearts as fiercely burn?
With a faith that never falters, can we watch the ebb and flow
Of the battle-tides, as martyrs did a hundred years ago?

Washington, Dec. 2, 1861.

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