An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge
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Short story by Ambrose Bierce, published in 1891 in Tales of Soldiers and Civilians, a collection that in 1898 was revised, enlarged, and retitled in the Midst of Life. The narrative concerns the final thoughts of a Southern planter as he is being hanged by Union soldiers. In the brief period between the tightening of the noose and the actual breaking of his neck, the man imagines his escape.