Topic: "Letter Home" (6)
My Dearest Scarlett;
My, my, how time does fly. It seems like only yesterday when all those would-be suitors gathered at Twelve Oaks, never to know that Ashley Wilkes, a gift you could not have, was your desire. Many of those would fall amongst the 620,000 lost in the insanity which began 150 years ago this very evening. Oh my dear, how you lost yourself in the swirling romance of men in uniform, and talk of glory, glory, glory.
I grieve still over the loss of our dear Bonnie, and your noble father, John O'Hara. If the number of those lost was told in modern terms, more than 6 million souls were surrendered to the folly of arms against the Union. The fact that it began in my native Charleston is too much for even me to consider, knowing the foolishness of men who fought for a way of lfe that had already gone windward.
Perhaps, in times to come, men will no longer strive to enslave some in order to obtain greater wealth, but I have my doubts. For as surely as there are young men whose eyes are blinded by the rush of arms, young women will stand and cheer as they go marching off to war. Except for you Scarlett, for we both know that it is your precious Ashley for whom you wait, while the blessed Melanie suffers an undeserved fate. Aye, poetry it is, the treachery of those who mourn by day, while the bier passes their way, for it is in their guile that time doth pass, until we are no more among things that last.
My ship waits in the harbor, so I must go, if not to win a war, at least to prolong it. Such is the role I play, and you, my dear, are the only winner amongst us all.
Captain Butler, CSA