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" I am wounded," cried Venero, as he swayed from
side to side; "While there's life there's always hope; Slowly onward I will lope,— If I fail to reach the cow-ranch, Bessie Lee shall know
" I will save her yet," he cried,
" Bessie Lee shall know I tried,"
And for her sake then he halted in the shadow of a
hill; From his chapareras he took With weak hands a little book; Tore a blank leaf from its pages saying, " This shall
be my will."
From a limb a pen he broke,
And he dipped his pen of oak
In the warm blood that was spurting from a wound
above his heart. " Rouse," he wrote before too late; " Apache warriors lie in wait. Good-bye, Bess, God bless you darling," and he felt
the cold tears start.
Then he made his message fast, Love's first message and its last, To the saddle horn he tied it and his lips were white
with pain, " Take this message, if not me,