Stars in the North ! - world-fragments, that through space Aeon on aeon ran their darkling race, Strike fiery-white against Earth's airy wall, And luminous in dissolution fall.
Stars in the South ! - dim souls, that could not shine, While life's dull orbit did their course confine, Now, devious hurled on war's opposing breath, Flash in a brief magnificence of Death.
Monday, 9/10/'99 : ' Braemar Castle' off Gib. Dear Mother, - Never can more auspicious start have been made! Everything has gone well, fine weather, perfect ship, and good company. We started soon after five, a little after Lionel left, with cheers from a large crowd of people. More cheers from a big battleship, the 'Australia,' I think, lying in Southampton Water.My cabin companion is called Captain B - of the Army
Service Corps, and he seems a nice fellow. We have got a good roomy cabin on the main deck, port side, just about under the saloon and bridge. There are about six or seven men I knew before on board, and, of course I have already made acquaintance with others. They are almost all Army Service Corps, doctors, Army Ordnance Corps, and special service (like me). There are just a few going out to join their respective regiments.Just before starting
I received a wire from General T - wishing me luck and sending messages to Major S -and to Miss A - , a nurse from the London Hospital. She seems a nice woman, but has been rather poorly from sea-sickness.
There are six or seven army nurses on board ; the only-other woman is a Mrs. B - , wife of an A.S.C. officer ;
she, I believe, is a native of the Cape (not black). I sit at dinner and all meals at the Captain's table. I put my own name down for it.There are about eighteen at it, headed by Col. G -and Prince C - V - . I sit between Major S - , a special service officer, and the ship's second officer, a good fellow. The food is excellent, but I am dieting myself strictly. There has not been much in the way of combined amusement started yet, but I believe a newspaper has been started, as I have been asked to contribute, and I hope to get a game of cricket this afternoon. It is feeling a little muggy and warm now, but I have not begun to put on summer clothes. I feel aches about the back and legs, as I always do at first on board ship. We have formed a class for early morning 'sandow' exercises in pyjamas on deck. I attended this morning. I have got my name down for a very good bath hour - viz., 7.30 ; this is the most fashionable and sought after time. Don't know what has happened to Davison [his soldier servant], haven't seen him for about forty-eight hours. There is nothing for him to do, the steward looks after me and my clothes. This ship, though new and splendid, is a slow one, as she is intended for freight; she only goes thirteen knots an hour, so we shall not get to Cape Town till about Saturday fortnight - i.e., the 27th or 28th. I can gather no ideas of what we are going to do.
PrinceC -V - ,though he knows a goodmany things, hasn't the faintest notion. We have most of us been given secret books compiled in the Intelligence division on the Boers and the Transvaal. We have just been attending a lecture on inoculation for enteric by one of the doctors on board. I am not going to be done myself. People rarely get it over thirty, and the fact of having had typhoid is an additional safeguard.