O mother of a blessed soul on high!
Thy tears may soon be shed—
Think of thy boy with princes of the sky,
Among the Southern dead.
How must he smile on this dull world beneath,
Fevered with swift renown;
He, with the martyr's amaranthine wreath,
Twining the victor's crown!
Turner Ashby of Virginia (1824-1862) distinguished himself as a leader of cavalry under ‘Stonewall’ Jackson. The English military writer, Colonel Henderson, says of him: ‘Ashby was the beau-ideal of a captain of light-horse. His reckless daring, both across-country and under fire, made him the idol of the army. Nor was his reputation confined to the Confederate ranks. “I think even our men,” says a Federal officer, “had a kind of admiration for him, as he sat unmoved upon his horse, and let them pepper away at him as if he enjoyed it.” ’
To the brave all homage render!
Weep, ye skies of June!
With a radiance pure and tender,
Shine, O saddened moon;
‘Dead upon the field of glory!’—
Hero fit for song and story—
Lies our bold dragoon.
Well they learned, whose hands have slain him,
Braver, knightlier foe
Never fought 'gainst Moor or Paynim—
Rode at Templestowe:
With a mien how high and joyous,
'Gainst the hordes that would destroy us,
Went he forth, we know.