O! Touch Not My Sister's Picture

The Confession of a Rebel Prisoner

Melody - T. Martin Towne, 1863; Seq. by Benjamin R. Tubb

E. S. Kellogg, 1863

On the bloody field of battle,
One dark night, with stealthy tread,
I was prowling 'round for plunder
'Mid the dying and the dead.
And roughly seized a locket,
Pressed upon a throbbing breast,
Words of pleasing, faintly uttered
Sought my purpose to arrest.
O! touch not my sister's picture,
Let it lie upon my heart;
With the parting kiss I promised
I would never with it part.

2. 'Tis my dearest earthly treasure
But to you of little worth;
Would you rob a fellow soldier,
Dying on the cold, cold earth?
Gentle Mary, thy dear image,
With its sweet approving smile,
As I fondly gazed upon it,
Kept me pure among the vile.

3. Lonely orphans from our childhood
With no one to love beside,
She hath been my more than mother
Friend and couselor and guide.
By the memory of thy mother,
Let me plead with the once more,
Though I but repeat the language
Which I vainly used before.
O! touch not my sister's picture!
With these words he sank to rest.
In a new-made grace I left him,
With that locket on his breast.


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