Thanks for the joy thou gavest to our hearts,
Thanks for thy zeal and aid; thy recompense
Will be to share our glorious death and fame.
While farther you commune, my friends, I now
Will read the letters from our Chief Commander.
[Stepping aside, he opem the dispatches and reads them.]
Pray, tell us, Colonel Oldham, now, what motive
Urged thee to venture back into this fort,
From which, if I am right, two weeks ago
Thou didst depart to reach thy distant home?
The kind reception of some friends I met
Upon my route, and—must I say?—e'en more,
An inward voice that day and night recalled
My lingering steps back to the Alamo,
Delayed my journey's progress at Gonzalez.
While so upon the eve of March the second
My friends and I lay quietly encamped
Behind the town, we saw upon the road
That leads from Anahuac to this fort,
A horseman coming in the utmost haste.
Arrived he fell, faint from his arduous ride,
Into our arms. Concealed on him we found
The Chief Commander's orders for this fort,