[With few exceptions, the Pieces in this volume originated in an impulse imparted by the fall of Richmond. They were composed without reference to collective arrangement, but, being brought together in review, naturally fall into the order assumed.
The events and incidents of the conflict --- making up a whole, in varied amplitude, corresponding with the geographical area covered by the war --- from these but a few themes have been taken, such as for any cause chanced to imprint themselves upon the mind.
The aspects which the strife as a memory assumes are as manifold as are the moods of involuntary meditation---moods variable, and at times widely at variance. Yielding instinctively, one after another, to feelings not inspired from any one source exclusively, and unmindful, without purposing to be, of consistency, I seem, in most of these verses, to have but placed a harp in a window, and noted the contrasted airs which wayward winds have played upon the strings.]