Simms, now in his old age, did all in his power to rouse the Spirit of the inhabitants. In a series of poems, Do Ye Quail? The Angel of the Church, and Our city by the sea, he presents in passionate words the claims of the historic city upon its inhabitants. Especially vivid is his plea for St. Michael's church, whose spire for full a hundred years had been a people's point of light, and the sweet, clear music of whose bells, made liquid-soft in Southern air, had been a benediction in the life of the city. But the words of her poets could not avail the doomed city when, in 1865, Sherman's army marched north from Savannah. Timrod, now a citizen of Columbia, wrote his greatest lyric, Carolina, which comes nearest to My Maryland of all the poems of the war in its indignation and power. He reproaches the idle hands and craven calm of the inhabitants, but calls upon the descendants of Rutledge, Laurens, and Marion to rouse themselves against the despot who treads their sacred sands. The answer to this appeal was the burning of Columbia. Hayne and John Dickson Bruns still had hope that Charleston might escape the doom. As Timrod from Charleston had given to the world the first expression of the new nation's hope, so his friend and fellow townsman, Dr. Bruns, was to utter the last appeal for Charleston in his The foe at the Gates. There is nothing more tragic in the Civil War than the fall of Charleston—the proud, passionate, and romantic city that had issued her challenge to the South to join her in the conflict with the North. In her last despairing cry the poet calls upon her children to ring round her and catch one last glance from her imploring eye:
From all her fanes let solemn bells be tolled;The fall of Charleston was the beginning of the end. Various poems on Lee, notably Ticknor's Lee, Thompson's Lee to the Rear, and the anonymous Silent March, suggest the last battles in Virginia. The dominant note of the later poetry is that of melancholy, now and then tempered by a sort of pathetic longing for peace. Eggleston tells us that the most
Heap with kind hands her costly funeral pyre,
And thus, with paean sung and anthem rolled,
Give her unspotted to the God of Fire.