Verse > Anthologies > William McCarty, ed. > The American National Song Book
William McCarty, comp.  The American National Song Book.  1842.
On the Death of Capt. L. Story
Of the Pennsylvania artillery—1785

HOW wrapt in darkness is the fates’ decree!
How hard to trace the maze of destiny;
Born in a northern clime, perhaps we die
Far in the south, no dear relation nigh;
There breathe our first, and here in silence lie.        5
So the loved youth, the subject of my song,
Sleeps on the Ashley, though from Anglia sprung:
Lamented Story! lamented though in vain,
Who this mysterious hardship shall explain;
That Heaven should such superior gifts supply,        10
Yet length of days for exercise deny?
Was it for this (your country’s faults discern’d)
You left her, and became our trusty friend;
Forsook your friends, relations, country, home,
And nobly made our injured cause your own!        15
But see in solemn pomp they move this way,
The youthful soldier to his grave convey;
In steady ranks his comrades silent mourn,
By brother masons, see his corpse is borne,
The pausing drums their slowest notes resound,        20
The train conducting to the hallow’d ground;
Where the last office by the priest is paid,
As in his honour’d grave the hero’s laid.
Around its closing mouth a circling band,
Of brothers, friends, in martial order stand:        25
Then in his grave their weeping laurels throw,
And take their last farewell, o’erwhelm’d with wo.

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