SOFTLY NOW, TENDERLY, LIFT HIM WITH CARE.
Softly now, tenderly, lift him with care,
This is a hero whose pale form ye bear;
Raise that right arm of his up to his side-
Look here, that's where the ball struck when he died!
Brush back the hair from his pain-moistened brow.
Cold enough, still enough, white enough now;
Lay his cap over it-gently-that's right,
Cover his dead eyes away from the light.
Loosen his sword-belt-there, take it away,
No blade is sheathed in its scabbard to-day;
Here, throw this flag o'er his poor wounded breast.
Wrapped in its folds we will lay him to rest.
Only this morning, poor fellow, be stood
Smiling in front, gallant, noble, and good,
Cheering his comrades, himself at their bead,
Now they have killed him, we bear him here dead
Some heart is longing and hoping for him,
Some eyes must weep 'till their light has grown dim;
Some hand shall never more meet touch of his,
Heaven curse the traitors whose work is like this!
There, lay him down in his lone hero grave,
Throw the earth tenderly over the brave;
Now leave him sleeping, 'tis all we can do,
Love's work is o'er for him, life's journey's through.