Monday, March 23, 2009

Cover them Over

Traditionally read at Memorial Day ceremonies in New England:

Cover the thousands who sleep far away--
Sleep where their friends can not find them to-day;
They who in mountain, and hillside and dell
Rest where they wearied, and lie where they fell.
Softly the grass-blade creeps round their repose;
Sweetly above them the wild flow'ret blows;
Zephyrs of freedom fly gently o'erhead,
Whispering names for the patriot dead.
Cover the faces that motionless lie,
Shut from the blue of the glorious sky;
Faces once lighted with smiles of the gay--
Faces now marred with the frown of decay.
Eyes that beamed friendship and love to your own;
Lips that sweet thoughts of affection made known;
Brows you have soothed in the day of distress;
Cheeks you have flushed by the tender caress.
Faces that brightened at War's stirring cry;
Faces that streamed when they bade you good-by. Faces that glowed in the battle's red flame, Paling for naught, till the Death Angel came. Cover them over--yes, cover them over-- Parent, and husband, and brother, and lover:
Kiss in your hearts these dead heroes of ours,
And cover them over with beautiful flowers!
-- Will Carlton

1 comment:

Rebecca Foster said...

Very nice poem. Reminds me of my dad.