GONE TO THE WAR
by: Horatio Alger (1832-1899)
- y Charlie has gone to the war,
- My Charlie so brave and tall;
- He left his plough in the furrow,
- And flew at his country's call.
- May God in safety keep him,
- My precious boy--my all!
- My heart is pining to see him;
- I miss him every day;
- My heart is weary with waiting,
- And sick of the long delay,
- But I know his country needs him,
- And I could not bid him stay.
- I remember how his face flushed,
- And how his color came,
- When the flash from the guns of Sumter
- Lit the whole land with flame,
- And darkened our country's banner
- With the crimson hue of shame.
- 'Mother,' he said, then faltered,
- I felt his mute appeal;
- I paused- if you are a mother,
- You know what mothers feel,
- When called to yield their dear ones
- To the cruel bullet and steel.
- My heart stood still for a moment,
- Struck with a mighty woe;
- A faint as of death came o'er me,
- I am a mother, you know,
- But I sternly checked my weakness,
- And firmly bade him 'Go.'
- Wherever the fight is fiercest
- I know that my boy will be;
- Wherever the need is sorest
- Of the stout arms of the free.
- May he prove as true to his country
- As he has been true to me.
- My home is lonely without him,
- My hearth bereft of joy,
- The thought of him who has left me
- My constant sad employ;
- But God has been good to the mother,
- She shall not blush for her boy.
MORE POEMS BY HORATIO ALGER
|"Gone to the War" is reprinted from Grand'ther Baldwin's Thanksgiving with Other Ballads and Poems. Horatio Alger. Boston: Loring Publisher, 1875.