By Mrs. M. J. Preston, Lexington, Va.

Halt! the march is over;
Day is almost done;
Loose the cumbrous knapsack,
Drop the heavy gun.
Chilled, and worn, and weary,
Wander to and fro,
Seeking wood to kindle
Fires amidst the snow.

Round the camp-blaze gather,
Heed not sleep nor cold;
Ye are Spartan soldiers,
Strong, and brave, and bold.
Never Xerxian army
Yet subdued a foe,
Who but asked a blanket
On a bed of snow!

Shivering ’midst the darkness,
Christian men are found
There devoutly kneeling
On the frozen ground;
Pleading for their country
In its hour of woe,
For its soldiers marching
Shoeless through the snow!

Lost in heavy slumbers,
Free from toil and strife,
Dreaming of their dear ones—
Home, and child, and wife;
Tentless they are lying,
While the fires burn low—
Lying in their blankets,
’Midst December’s snow.