So in writing something in Latin about the state of affairs in the US, I want to quote Thomas Jefferson's 1820 letter to John Holmes in which he says, about the Missouri Compromise (which required that future states be admitted to the Union two at a time and that one be slave and one be free):
But this momentous question, like a fire bell in the night, awakened and filled me with terror. I considered it at once as the knell of the Union.
This is what I've worked up. (I went for drama with word order rather than faithfulness to the original, which I'm okay with, unless it makes it less effective in some way.)
Cōnflāgrātiōnis vērō ut campana quæ noctū commonet, mōmentī quæstiō mē exsūscitāvit conterruitque. Nēniam statim habuī Fœderis.
I'd love any thoughts on how to improve it.