Call of the Whippoorwill at Twilight

by Margie Riddle Bearss

To hear the call of the whippoorwill is a sound that, for me, epitomized the loneliness of the Champion Hill battlefield. The haunting call evoked powerful feelings for a battlefield that once was so full of life and is now only a memory of the dead.

It was getting late - dusk was falling and Ed was talking to Sid III. I was waiting at the car for Ed and all was quiet - except for the cricket’s night noise. Suddenly, the silence of the night was interrupted by the distant ragged sound of a whippoorwill’s call. At first I believed it was my imagination. The lonely call fit so perfectly into the picture.

About that time from a nearby grove of trees came the answering call of another whippoorwill - loud and clear. Chills went up my spine. The whippoorwill’s call over the darkening battlefield was a sound that I will never forget.



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Copyright (c) James and Rebecca Drake, Margie Riddle Bearss, 2005.  All Rights Reserved.