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The MacKERELerel Brigade — attempt to "Bag" a Confederate raid by strategy.And now let your mind fly, like a wearied dove, to the celebrated Arabian scenes of festive Accomac, where the Mackerel brigade continues to reconnoiter in force, and awaits the death of the Confederacy by old age. Men, my boy, who entered this strategic war in the full bloom of youth, now go with stooping shoulders and tottering gait when they have a barrel of flour to carry, and the bloom has departed from every part of them save the extreme tip of that handle of the human countenance which first meets the edge of an open door in the dark. Even the Mackerel brass band begins to grow feeble, often making pitiable attempts to execute stirring strains on his night key bugle, as though unconscious that, by long disuse in his pocket, it had become clogged with bread and cheese. There is on the Southern border of Accomac, my boy, a solitary house, containing furniture and the necessaries of life, which the Conic Section of the Mackerel Brigade had been ordered to guard. It stands immediately on the verdant banks of Awlkwyet river, where that stream must be at least ten inches deep, and as the first regular bridge is ten miles below it, of course the Conic Section, to guard the house, was placed at the end of the bridge — it being a principle of national strategy never to recognize any Confederate raid not made across a regular bridge. Now, it chanced that while the Conic Section at the bridge was taking a short nap, having been up very late the night before, and while the beloved General of the Mackerel Brigade was visiting a portion of his beautiful home circle in Paris, that a very dirty Confederacy, riding in a seedy go-cart made his appearance on the bank of the river opposite the house and commenced to make a raid right through the water to the shore on his side — His geometrical steed wet his feet thereby, and the wheels of his squeaking vehicle were dampened by this barbarian way of offering irregular opposition to the Government; but what cared he for the rules of civilized warfare, which are the only authorized West Point editions? Like all his infatuated countrymen, he was rendered less than strategy by the demon of secession, and he crossed by the unmilitary ford instead of by the military bridge. This is, indeed, heart-sickening. There was a Mackerel chap who slept in the house to take care of a large black bottle, and when he heard the go cart driving up before the door, he stuck his head out of the window, and says he: ‘"What is it which you would have in these irregular proceedings, Mr. Stuart?"’ The Confederacy dismounted from his chariot, tied a bag of oats over his charger's head, and says he: ‘"I'm making a raid."’ The Mackerel waved his hand southward, and says he: ‘"You'll find the bridge just below. Don't stay here,"’ says the Mackerel, earnestly, ‘"or you'll exasperate the North to fury."’ Here the Confederacy made some remark, in which the name of the North and a profane expletive were connected very closely, and proceeded to bring from the house a hobby horse which stood in the hall. After placing this valuable article in his go cart, he next brought out a cooking stove, closely following this with some chairs, a dining table, two feather beds, a tea set, four wine glasses and some tumblers, a looking glass, four sheets, two cottage bedsteads, a Brussels carpet, and a Mallees cat. With these and a few other exceptions, my boy, he made no attempt to disturb private property; thereby proving that the President's proclamation has already produced a wholesome effect in the degenerate South. While this was going on the vigilant Mackerel guard descended privately from a back window, and made a forced march to where the Conic Section were watching something which looked like a man in the Southern horizon — instantly making known the audacious raid of the thieving Confederacy, and asking whether the new levies under the Executive's last call were likely to arrive early enough to take measures for the prevention of the capture of Washington. While the question was in debate, my boy, the beloved General of the Mackerel Brigade arrived with his trunk and umbrella, from Paris, and having caused it to be telegraphed to all the reliable morning journals, that the Confederacy was now in a fair way to be captured alive, he at once took measures to cut off the retreat of the latter. Capt. William Brown, with company 3, regiment 5, was at once ordered to construct a pontoon bridge across the river some miles below, and watch it vigilantly day and night; Captain Rob Shorty and Colonel Wobert Wobinson, with the Anatomical cavalry, were dispatched to take possession of a railroad reading to Manassas; whilst Captain Samuele Smith, with the balance of the Conic Section, was commanded to make a detour of three hundred miles, and endeavor to reach the invaded house before midnight set in. All these movements were in accordance with profound strategy, my boy, and cut off the Confederacy from retreat by every route in the world, except the insignificant one he came by. Satisfied that the war was going to end in about sixty days, after which we should have time to defeat combined Europe, the Mackerel guard hastened back to the domicil, which he reached just in time to find the Confederacy topping his go-cart with kindling wood from the cellar. I regret to say, my boy — I blush for my species as I make the incredible revelation — that upon receiving the information of his surrounding and probable strategy capture by the Valliant Mackerel Brigade, the irreverent Confederacy burst into a hideous horse laugh, and at once proceeded to appropriate the poor Mackerel chap's own shoes and stockings. With the deepest horror I record that he also tweaked the Mackerel's nose. ‘"I did not intend this as a permanent invasion,"’ says the impious Confederacy, as he remounted his go-cart and turned his geometrical Arabian toward the water again, ‘"but I have just married a daughter of South Carolina--one of two twins — and reckoned that I needed some things to set up housekeeping. Farewell, foul Hessian,"’ says the Confederacy, as he splashed through the water to the opposite bank, ‘"fare thee well, and tell your fiendish ruler that it is somewhat impossible to conquer the sunny South."’ The Mackerel chap gazed thoughtfully after the go-cart as it disappeared on the other side of the balmy Awlkwyet stream, and says he: "Rail on, my erring brother; but if you'd only stayed here one more week, you might not have escaped thus for seven whole days. Had the army been insufficient to secure you, says the Mackerel to himself, ‘"had the army been insufficient to secure you, why, there's the police."’ Orpheus C. Kerr.
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