75. the volunteer's wife.I knew by the light in his deep, dark eye,
When he heard the beat of the mustering drum,
That he never would fold his arm and sigh
Over the state of ills that would come;
I knew that the blood of a patriot sire
Coursed through his veins like a stream of fire;
So I took his hand,
And bade him go,
But he never dreamed
That it grieved me so.
Two fair-haired children he left with me,
Who lisp his name at the eventide--
The very hour when upon his knee
He used to fondle his pet and pride.
Alas! they may never again be blessed
By a father's care in the old home nest;
And he never again
May hear the tones,
Or kiss the lips
Of his little ones.
I know that he has answered his country's call,
That his breast is bared at a high command;
But my heart will break, I know, if he fill
In the battle-front by a traitor's hand;
Yet I murmur not, though my tear-wet eyes
Attest the worth of the sacrifice;
'Tis a wife's free gift,
Two lives in one,
In the name of God,
And of Washington.
Perhaps, when the maple trees are red,
And the golden glories of harvest come,
I shall wake some morning to hear his tread,
And give him a warm heart's welcome home;
To kneel with him in a fervent prayer,
Thanking our God for his watchful care
In shielding his heart
From the rebel's brand,
Who honored the flag
Of the cherished land.