EPISTLE TO THE LADIES by W.E.M., of Gen. Lee's Army

Ye Southern maids and ladies fair, Of whatsoe'r degree, A moment stop--a moment spare-- And listen unto me. The summer's gone, the frosts have come, The winter draweth near, And still they march to fife and drum-- Our armies! do you hear? Give heed then to the yarn I spin, Who says that it is coarse? At your fair feet I lay the sin, The thread of my discourse. To speak of shoes, it boots not here; Our Q.M.'s, wise and good, Give cotton calf-skins twice a year With soles of cottonwood. Shoeless we meet the well-shod foe, And bootless him despise; Sockless we watch, with bleeding toe, And him sockdologise! Perchance our powder giveth out, We fight them, then, with rocks; With hungry craws we craw-fish not, But, then, we miss the socks. Few are the miseries that we lack, And comforts seldom come; What have I in my haversack? And what have you at home? Fair ladies, then, if nothing loth, Bring forth your spinning wheels; Knit not your brow--but knit to clothe In bliss our blistered heels. Do not you take amiss, dear miss, The burden of my yarn; Alas! I know there's many a lass That doesn't care a darn. But you can aid us if you will, And heaven will surely bless And Foote will vote to foot a bill For succouring our distress. For all the socks the maids have made, My thanks for all the brave; And honoured be your pious trade, The soldier's sole to save.

Soldier Life

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Last modified 18-April-2001