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The Nation’s Dead.

October 10, 2010

—Rev. Edward C. Porter.


Three Thousand Five Hundred Fifty Three
Unknown Union Soldiers Lie Interred In
Arlington National Cemetery.
FOUR hundred thousand men,
The brave—the good—the true,
In tangled wood, in mountain glen,
On battle plain, in prison pen,
Lie dead for me and you!
Four hundred thousand of the brave
Have made our ransomed soil their grave,
For me and you!
Good friend, for me and you!
 
In many a fevered swamp,
By many a black bayou,
In many a cold and frozen camp,
The weary sentinel ceased his tramp,
And died for me and you!
From Western plain to ocean tide
Are stretched the graves of those who died
For me and you!
Good friend, for me and you!
 
On many a bloody plain
Their ready swords they drew,
And poured their life-blood, like the rain,
A home—a heritage to gain,
To gain for me and you!
Our brothers mustered by our side
They marched, and fought, and bravely died,
For me and you!
Good friend, for me and you!
 
Up many a fortress wall
They charged—those boys in blue—
‘Mid surging smoke, and volleyed ball
The bravest were the first to fall!
To fall for me and you!
These noble men—the nation’s pride—
Four hundred thousand men have died
For me and you!
Good friend, for me and you!
 
In treason’s prison-hold
Their martyr spirits grew
To stature like the saints of old,
While amid agonies untold,
They starved for me and you!
The good, the patient, and the tried,
Four hundred thousand men have died,
For me and you!
Good friend, for me and you!
 
A debt we ne’er can pay
To them is justly due,
And to the nation’s latest day
Our children’s children still shall say,
“They died for me and you!”
Four hundred thousand of the brave
Made this, our ransomed soil, their grave,
For me and you!
Good friend, for me and you!

The Round Table (September 9, 1865).

 

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