67. send them home tenderly.1
by G. W. Bungay.I.
In their own martial robes arrayed,
With cap, and cloak, and shining blade,
In the still coffin softly laid,
Oh, send them tenderly.
Our bleeding country's gallant corps
Of noble dead can sleep no more
Where monuments at Baltimore
Libel our Liberty.
Oh, touch them tenderly, I pray,
And softly wipe the blood away
From the red lips of wounds, that say,
“How sweet it is to die
For one's dear Country, at a time
Coincidence crowns, with sublime
Associations, deeds that chime
In human history!”
Deal gently with the pale, cold dead,
For Massachusetts bows her head--
But not with shame; her eyes are red
With weeping for the slain.
Like Rachel, she is sad indeed;
And long her broken heart will bleed
For children true in word and deed
She cannot meet again.
Whisper no word of treason when
Ye bear away our bravest men
From the foul traitor's hateful den,
Red with our brother's blood;
A spot that must forever be,
Like Sodom sunk beneath the sea,
It sinks in coward treachery,
Unwept beneath the flood.
Lift up each gallant son of Mars,
And shroud him in the flag of stars,
Beneath whose folds he won the scars
Through which his spirit fled
From glory here, to glory where
The banner blue in fields of air
Is bright with stars forever there,
Without the stripes of red.