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[213] As Saul, bound for Damascus fair,
Was struck blind by sudden light,
So my eyes are pained and dazzled
By a radiance pure and white
Shot back by the burnished armor
Of that glory-belted Knight.

His was all the Norman's polish
And sobriety of grace;
All the Goth's majestic figure:
All the Roman's noble face:
And he stood the tall exemplar
Of a grand historic race.

Baronial were his acres where
Potomac's waters run;
High his lineage, and his blazon
Was by cunning heralds done;
But better still he might have said
Of his ‘works’ he was the ‘son.’

Truth walked beside him always
From his childhood's early years,
Honor followed as his shadow—
Valor lightened all his cares;
And he rode—that grand Virginian—
Last of all the Cavaliers!

As a soldier we all knew him
Great in action and repose.
Saw how his genius kindled
And his mighty spirit rose
When the four quarters of the globe
Encompassed him with foes.

But he and his grew braver
As the danger grew more rife,
Avaricious they of glory
But most prodigal of life,
And the ‘Army of Virginia,’
Was the Atlas of the strife.

As his troubles gathered round him,
Thick as waves that beat the shore
Atra Cura rode behind him—
Famine's shadow filled his door;
Still he wrought deeds no mortal man
Had ever wrought before.

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