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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
America: Vols. XXV–XXIX. 1876–79.

Southern States: Newport News, Va.

A Nameless Grave

By Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807–1882)

“A SOLDIER of the Union mustered out,”

Is the inscription on an unknown grave

At Newport News, beside the salt-sea wave,

Nameless and dateless; sentinel or scout

Shot down in skirmish, or disastrous rout

Of battle, when the loud artillery drave

Its iron wedges through the ranks of brave

And doomed battalions, storming the redoubt.

Thou unknown hero sleeping by the sea

In thy forgotten grave! with secret shame

I feel my pulses beat, my forehead burn,

When I remember thou hast given for me

All that thou hadst, thy life, thy very name,

And I can give thee nothing in return.