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30. the soldier's dream.

by A Connecticut soldier.
Lines suggested after the Alarm and Bloody Contest of Major Cole's Command on Loudon Heights.

A soldier reclines in the noisy camp,
     Dreaming of home and the loved ones there,
Unheeding alike the measured tramp
     And the martial music which fills the air.

Oh! how delicious that beautiful dream!
     With tremulous joy, in a fond embrace
He folds to his heart his loved ones again,
     And looks with delight in each radiant face.

Sweet voices, like melody, fall on his ear,
     And baby-lips prattle in welcoming glee;
On the cheek of his wife there's a glittering tear,
     As she whispers: “Beloved, I've been praying for thee.”

She tells him how oft, in the watches of night,
     Her prayers were breathed forth to the Father above,
That He, in his infinite goodness and might,
     Would spread o'er her husband a mantle of love.

The soul of the sleeper is thrilling with joy,
     But his dream is dispelled by the tones of command:
“To arms!” shouts the captain; “brave soldiers, to arms!
     And fight for your country — the foe is at hand!”

'Mid that terrible conflict, 'mid carnage and strife,
     The soldier is calm, and his spirit is free;
He thinks of his children — he thinks of his wife--
     And murmurs: “I know they are praying for me.”

And with a strong arm that is nerved for the right,
     And with a true heart for his country and God,
He's a hero that day in the midst of the fight,
     And wins a proud name to be sounded abroad.

Few knew of the talisman worn in his breast--
     Love, blended with faith, is inciting him on;
He thinks not of danger, he seeks not for rest,
     Till the battle is ended — the victory won.

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