Wounded And Killed
From Arthur’s Home Magazine, May 1862
It takes but a little space in the columns of the daily papers; but, oh! what long household stories and biographies are every one of these strange names that we read over and forget.
“Wounded and killed!” Some eye reads the name to whom it is dear as life, and some heart is struck or broken with the blow made by that name among the list.
It’s our Henry, or our John, our James, or our Thomas, that lies with his poor broken limbs at the hospital, or white, still and ghastly face on the battle field. Alas! for the eyes that read; alas! for the hearts that feel!
“He was my pretty boy, that I’ve sung to sleep so many times in my arms!” says the poor mother, bowing her head in anguish that cannot be uttered. “He was my brave, noble husband, the father of my little orphan children!” sobs the stricken wife. “He was my darling brother, that I loved so, that I was so proud of,” murmurs the sister, amid her tears; and so the terrible stroke falls on homes throughout the land.
“Wounded and killed.” Every name in that list is a lightning stroke to some heart, and breaks like thunder over some home! and falls a long, black shadow upon some hearthstone.
It is a year that we have seen those lists from time to time in the newspapers. God be thanked that they have been as few and short as they have; and God be thanked that we seem now to be walking on the hills of the morning, and that we say to each other in hopeful voices, “when the war is over.”
We look off to the future, not as we did last May, with fear and shuddering, but with hope and trust; that the thunder of the cannon, the tramp of the soldier, the flash of arms, and the beating of drums, shall soon be over in our land; and that we shall sit down under our own vine and fig tree, a nation unbroken, united and free!