Manders makes a final entry in the cemetery logbook, explaining that he has just returned from visiting the Carroll crypt to make sure everything is all right. Inside, he saw Willie Lincoln’s coffin poking out from the wall, so he pushed it back in and thought morosely about the boy’s first night in the cemetery—the first of a “long sad eternity of such nights.” This idea makes him think about his own children, and he finds himself unable to imagine the pain of losing a little one. Trying to distract himself, he hopes that “these sad & morbid thoughts will soon fade away […] with the happy sight of our dear friend rising the Sun.”
As Manders concludes his entry, he dwells upon Lincoln’s harrowing loss while also looking forward to a new day. In this manner, he illustrates that life goes on despite its many tragedies. Feeling sad for the president, he recognizes that death and grief are part of life, which means they will inevitably “fade away”—just like everything else.