The Project Gutenberg eBook of The World's Best Poetry, Volume 08: National Spirit

This ebook is for the use of anyone anywhere in the United States and most other parts of the world at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this ebook or online at If you are not located in the United States, you will have to check the laws of the country where you are located before using this eBook.

Title: The World's Best Poetry, Volume 08: National Spirit

Contributor: Francis Hovey Stoddard

Editor: Bliss Carman

Release date: July 17, 2004 [eBook #12924]
Most recently updated: December 15, 2020

Language: English


Produced by Charles Aldarondo, Leonard Johnson, and the Online

Distributed Proofreading Team.


    I Home: Friendship
    II Love
   III Sorrow and Consolation
    IV The Higher Life
     V Nature
    VI Fancy: Sentiment
   VII Descriptive: Narrative
  VIII National Spirit
    IX Tragedy: Humor
     X Poetical Quotations



Associate Editors
John Vance Cheney
Charles G.D. Roberts
Charles F. Richardson
Francis H. Stoddard

Managing Editor
John R. Howard


The World's Best Poetry Vol. VIII NATIONAL SPIRIT



Clever men of action, according to Bacon, despise studies, ignorant men too much admire them, wise men make use of them. "Yet," he says, "they teach not their own use, but that there is a wisdom without them and above them won by observation." These are the words of a man who had been taught by years of studiousness the emptiness of mere study. It does not teach its own usefulness, and gives its most important lesson if through it we learn that beyond lies a region from which may come a truer wisdom won by observation. This, when all is said, is the one great defect of any system of study, in that it teaches not its own use. No amount of study of the principles of barter will make a man a great merchant. One can study painting and learn all the characteristics and methods and schools of the art and yet not be able to paint a picture. No amount of study of poetry will make a man a poet. So the crafty men of action "contemn studies," and the wise men who use them look beyond them for their value. "English literature," said a noted professor not long ago, "cannot be taught"; and certain it is that even with the most advanced analytical text-book one cannot get a final satisfaction from "doing a sum" in English literature as one would work a problem in arithmetic. When applied to the higher arts, study, deep and true as one can make it, leaves one the surer that there is a wisdom beyond, which cometh not by study alone.

Least of all can the deepest things in poetry be learned by mere study. Poetry deals with feeling, which study excludes. Study, indeed, seems to belong exclusively to the prose habit; it seems to be of the intellect and not of the emotions; to be of the mind and not of the spirit. We cannot write a text-book in poetry, nor can we ever in a text-book written in prose put all the secret of poetry. Beyond the text-book always lies the higher wisdom born of that which Bacon called observation, which most of us now call insight, that immediate apprehension of the highest relations which comes as a revelation in our inspired moments.

In spite of all this the study of poetry has an important function, and it is the purpose of this article to show how to use it most effectively. Poetry is one of the most difficult of all arts to study, so difficult that it has had few text-books and no complete exposition. The inquirer searching for help will find only a few hand-books, the most useful of which are these: Gummere: "Beginnings of Poetry" and "Hand-book of Poetry"; Schipper: "Metrik"; Lanier: "Science of English Verse"; Guest: "English Rhythms"; Stedman: "The Nature and Elements of Poetry." Excellent as these are, he may lament when he has read them that he has found the history of poetic forms, and the technique of poetic method, where he hoped to find the secret of poetry. He will be likely to get as much help from writings on poetry that are not text-books, such as Matthew Arnold's Essays: "On Translating Homer," "Last Words on Translating Homer," "Celtic Poetry," "Introduction to the Poetry of Wordsworth," and the "Introduction to Humphry Ward's English Poets"; Emerson's Essays: "The Poet" and "Poetry and Imagination"; Wordsworth's Introduction to the "Lyrical Ballads"; Poe's striking little essays on the art of poetry; Aristotle's "Rhetoric"; Macaulay's "Essay on Milton"; Lowell's "Essay on Dryden"; and many a passage of illuminative comment from Milton, from Pope, from Dryden, from Coleridge and from many another. For one who has not known and read much poetry the best introduction to its study may well be the pleasurable reading of some, or of all, of these works, though remembering that such reading is not study, but only the reviewing of records of work done by others, useful mainly as a preparation for the real study which is to follow.

From all these works the student will not be likely to get a definition of poetry which will satisfy him. One may say indeed with truth that poetry is such expression as parallels the real and the ideal by means of some rhythmic form. But this is not a complete definition. Poetry is not to be bounded with a measuring line or sounded with a plummet. The student must feel after its limits as these authors have done, and find for himself its satisfactions. One can feel more of its power than the mind can define; for definitions are prose-forms of mind action, while poetry in its higher manifestations is pure emotion, outpassing prose limits. Yet one can know poetry if he cannot completely define it. The one essential element which distinguishes it from prose is rhythm. In its primal expressions this is mainly a rhythm of stresses and sounds—of accents and measures, of alliterations and rhymes. Poetry began when man, swaying his body, first sang or moaned to give expression to his joy or sorrow. Its earliest forms are the songs which accompany the simplest emotions. When rowers were in a boat the swinging oars became rhythmic, and the oarsman's chant naturally followed. When the savage overcame his enemy, he danced his war dance, and sang his war song around his campfire at night, tone and words and gestures all fitting into harmony with the movement of his body. So came the chants and songs of work and of triumph. For the dead warrior the moan of lamentation fitted itself to the slower moving to and fro of the mourner, and hence came the elegy. In its first expression this was but inarticulate, half action, half music, dumbly voicing the emotion through the senses; its rhythms were all for the ear and it had little meaning beyond the crude representation of some simple human desire and grief.

It became poetry when it put a thrill of exultation in work, of delight in victory, or of grief at loss by death, into some rhythmic form tangible to the senses. There grew up thereafter a body of rhythmic forms—lines, stanzas, accents, rhythms, verbal harmonies. These forms are the outward dress of poetry, and may rightly be the first subject of the student's study. We properly give the name of poetry to verses such as Southey's "Lodore," Poe's "Bells," or Lanier's "Song of the Chattahoochee," which do little more than sing to our ears the harmonies of sound, the ultimate rhythms of nature. Yet it is not merely the brook or the bell or the river, that we hear in the poem, but the echoing of that large harmony of nature of which the sound of the brook or the bell is only the single strain. Through the particular it suggests the universal, as does all poetry, leading through nature up to something greater, far beyond. This rhythm is best studied in poems that were written to be sung or chanted. If one could read Greek, or Anglo-Saxon, or Old High German, or the English of Chaucer's day, he could quickly train his ear to be independent of the hand-books on versification, by reading aloud, or listening as one read aloud, the "Odyssey" or the "Beowulf," or the "Nibelungen Lied" or the "Canterbury Tales." These would be better for this purpose than any modern verses, for the reason that they were intended to be sung or chanted, and so all the rhythms are real to the senses. Since the barrier of language bars out for most of us this older verse, we can read the early ballads, the lyrics of the Elizabethan time, when as yet verses spoke mainly to the ear, or some modern poems of the simpler type, such as "Evangeline" or "Hiawatha."

Such poetry, which is mainly to delight and charm the ear, is really a primal form of verse and we may properly call it the poetry of the Senses. In studying it Lanier's "Science of English Verse" is a delightful companion, and many minor hand-books besides those named above, such as are found in most schools, and some of the shorter accounts of versification such as are found in works on rhetoric, will give assistance.

Yet the pathway to the mastery of the problems of metre is for each student to tread alone. The best plan is to read aloud a considerable quantity. Then the technical language of the books will lose its terrors and the simplicity of construction of good poetry will become apparent. If the student will read so much of this poetry that his senses become responsive to its music, he will no longer need a hand-book. For this purpose let him read such poems as can be sung, chanted, or spoken to the ear; such as Macaulay's "Lays of Ancient Rome," Scott's "Marmion," Browning's "Pied Piper" and "How They Brought the Good News," Tennyson's "Charge of the Light Brigade." Let him read mainly for the senses rather than for the mind, getting the reward in the quickening of life through the throbbing rhythms; then the metrical system of poetry will become as real to him as the rhythmic movements of the planets are to an astronomer. There is no other way to get a feeling for the pulsations of poetry than through this intimate acquaintance. Without this, months of reading of amphibrachs and trochees and dactyls will not avail. It should be read aloud as much as possible to make the swing of its verses perfectly clear. When it sings to us as we read, it has begun to teach the message of its rhythms.

Thus far the text-books have been pleasant companions, even when unable to give as much aid to the student as he could wish; but the fact will come to him at length that there is something more in poetry than the hand-books permit him to consider. These books deal with the forms, and most of them with the forms only. They analyze the methods, work out the metre, show how the parts are woven together, explain how the chords produce the harmonies. But just in proportion as the student becomes learned in these rhythms, and can distinguish minute or subtle variations of metrical structure, does he realize that this study teaches not its own use and that there is something beyond which must be won by his own observation. He finds in his search for rhythmical perfection that there are poems which make little appeal to his senses, whose lines do not sing themselves through his day-dreams, which yet affect his imagination even more powerfully than the musical strains thrilled his senses. He finds that there is much more in poetry than its rhymes and jingles, that there is a rhythm greater than that of the senses. In its more complex forms poetry is rhythm of thought, leading the mind to find relations which prose may describe, but which poetry alone can recreate. There is such a thing as a prose thought and such a thing as a poetic thought. The one gives with exactness the fact as it exists, clearly, honestly, directly, and for all completed and tangible things is the natural medium of expression. The other parallels the actual with a suggestion of an ideal rhythmically consonant with the motive underlying the fact. Justice, for example, deals in prose fashion with a crime and awards the punishment which the law allows; poetic justice suggests such recompense as would come of itself in a community perfectly organized. The prose of life is honest living, a worthy endeavor to do the best one can in the world as it is; the poetry of life is the feeling for, and the striving after, the bringing of this life into harmony with a nobler living. So we rightly give the name of poetry to such verse as Goldsmith's "Deserted Village," Johnson's "London," Gray's "Elegy," Wordsworth's "Excursion," Milton's "Paradise Lost," Chaucer's "Knight's Tale," Browning's "King and the Book," Tennyson's "In Memoriam," which do not much stir our senses. They parallel the real with the ideal, suggesting the eternal rhythms of infinite mind as the poetry of the senses suggests the eternal rhythms of omnipotent nature.

This poetry of the Intellect is the second great division of the poetic realm. Beyond it lies still another; for there are spiritual harmonies which the mind alone cannot compass, and which the senses alone cannot interpret. The hand-books know little of spiritual harmonies, and do not go beyond their academic classifications of lyric and epic, and their catalogues of pentameters, hexameters, or alexandrines. But the student can for himself push his observation beyond, and come to the poetry of the higher imagination, where he can be forgetful of the mere form and disdainful of the merely logical relations, where his spirit can as it were see face to face the truth beyond the seeming. This is the poetry of the spirit, and ought to come as a revelation to the searcher. He may first find it in some pure lyric such as Shelley's "Skylark," or in some mystical fantasy such as Moore's "Lallah Rookh" or Coleridge's "Christabel," or in some story of human abnegation such as Tennyson's "Enoch Arden," or some wail of a soul in pain, as in Shelley's "Adonais," or in some outburst of exultant grief such as Whitman's "Captain, My Captain," or in some revelation of the unseen potencies close about us, as in Browning's "Saul," or in some vision of the mystery of this our earthly struggle such as "Childe Roland to the Dark Tower Came," or in some answer of the spirit to a never stilled question such as Wordsworth's "Ode: Intimations of Immortality." When he thus finds it he has come to poetry in its highest use. In his "Alexander's Feast" Dryden hints at two great functions of poetry in the lines:

  "He raised a mortal to the skies,
  She drew an angel down."

The office of poetry is to parallel the actual with the ideal, to cast upon an earthly landscape something of a heavenly glow, to interpret earthly things in terms of the spirit. The poetry of the Senses lifts a mortal to the skies, thinking the thought of one higher than itself as the poet muses, singing the songs of an angelic choir in harmony with the rhythm of the verse. The poetry of the Spirit brings the message of the angels down to men and makes the harmonies they speak the music of this earthly life.

The highest type of poetry lends itself perfectly to earnest and profound study. In class work it is usually better to study poets as well as poems, and to study thoroughly a few works of a great master. Poetry is essentially a synthetic art; it unites the wandering desires of our hearts and spirits to make one single and enduring impression. Poetry speaks also the mood, the aspiration, and the deepest intent of its author; so that the great poet is the one who brings us most directly to understand its art. For most student classes it is best to take a single poet for interpretation, and to study in succession a small number—say six to ten—of his works, making one, or at least two or three, the subject of the conferences for each week. The choice of author will be dependent on many considerations and cannot here be positively advised, but one will not go astray in choosing Wordsworth, Tennyson, Browning, Longfellow, or Whittier, or three of them, for a season's work. Intelligent direction is of great assistance in making the study definite and progressive. Choose first of all the poems which seem to have influenced men, for to move men is the final test of poetry. If there is no class, and no leader, let the student make his choice by a preliminary examination. Let him read rapidly, and for the single impression, the poems of Wordsworth whose titles seem most familiar to him as he scans them over; such as "Tintern Abbey," "Yarrow Unvisited," "Solitary Reaper," "Lucy," "We are Seven," "The Intimations of Immortality," "She was a Phantom of Delight," and a few of the lyrical ballads; then let him read Tennyson's "Locksley Hall," "Maud," "The Idylls of the King," and a few of the shorter poems; let him read Browning's "Saul," "Abt Vogler," "The Grammarian's Funeral," "Childe Roland to the Dark Tower Came," "Pippa Passes," one or two dramas, and a few of the brief poems in the volume "Men and Women." Then let him make his own list for study, taking those poems which have most stirred him, those which he remembers vividly after his reading, those which have become a part of himself. If the student makes his choice frankly and sincerely, he has, in making it, begun his study. Then let him frame for himself or get from his leader, if he has one, a list of the questions which each poem is to answer for him. If the work be really poetry, its study ought to give a help toward the solution of the first great problems: "What is poetry?" and "What is its revelation to the life of our senses, our hearts, and our souls?" We have a right to ask of each poem three questions: "How does it charm our senses?"; "How does it make the meaning of things clearer for us?"; "How does it bring to us a renewal of life?" The first question is better fitted for private study than for class investigation, the senses being delicate organs and shy in company. Let the minute matters of form and structure be gone over at home. Let the student work out the metre, the typical line, and the variations by which the poet gets his effects, the metaphors, the alliterations, the consonant and vowel harmonies. It will aid if this work be made as definite and as exact as an investigation in a scientific laboratory. But all this should be the student's home work. In the class the large divisions of the poem should be sympathetically shown, so that each student will comprehend the poem as a whole as the poet must have conceived it. Then as some one reads aloud the lines the music of the rhythms will come by assimilation rather than by analysis. Poetry parallels the real with the ideal to make a harmony before undreamed of. So in the lines sound re-echoes sound, and a subtle music but half perceived sings itself out of the moving notes.

What burden this music bears is the second question. Poetry differs from prose in that it lifts the thought so that its highest relations and suggestions are made known. We have a right therefore to parallel the prose sight with the poetic visions and to find in what the one transcends the other. If we are studying the "Idylls of the King," for instance, we may fitly ask what was the story as the poet took it, and into what has he transformed it for us. This study of the thought of the poem is an excellent subject for class work. The questions should be made definite and so grouped that sections of the class can choose one or another phase of the problem; the conferences should be so directed that a few clearly worked-out and thoroughly unified poetic thoughts will be left in the mind of each student.

In all things practice may fitly supplement precept. In a reading circle of which one of the editors of this series was a member the poems of Tennyson were studied by a method closely resembling that advocated in this article. As a suggestion the topics and questions for one of the poems are here given. One of the members acted as leader. A brief essay reciting the history of the poem was read. The entire poem was read aloud by one of the members of the class. Then the topics given below were discussed as presented in turn by groups of students who had given especial attention to one of the topics. In the discussions the entire class joined, and at the close a very brief summing up by the leader gathered up the threads of thought.

Topic: "Locksley Hall" and "Locksley Hall Sixty Years After."

Required Readings: "Locksley Hall"; "Locksley Hall Sixty Years After";
"Lady Clara Vere de Vere"; "Sir Galahad."

Suggested Readings: In connection with the earlier poem, "Ulysses" and "The Two Voices"; in connection with the later poem, "Maud," "Memoir of Tennyson," by Lord Hallam Tennyson.

Suggestions for Study: (A) The physical basis of the poem.

Study the metre. Why called Trochaic Octameter? In what way does this metre resemble and in what way differ from Lowell's "Present Crisis," Swinburne's "Triumph of Time," Browning's "There 's a woman like a dewdrop" (from "The Blot i' the Scutcheon"), and Mrs. Browning's "Rhyme of the Duchess May"? Why is this metre peculiarly adapted to the sentiment of "Locksley Hall"? How does the metre differ in effect from that of Mrs. Julia Ward Howe's "Battle Hymn of the Republic" and Bryant's "The Death of the Flowers" and Tennyson's "May Queen"? Is the effect of the rhythm optimistic as opposed to the pessimism of the "Triumph of Time," and why? Why are the lines of this poem so easily carried in the memory? What is there in the use of the words which gives such sweetness to the verses as one reads them aloud. Has the poem for you a music of its own which haunts you like a remembered vision? Find out, if you can, something of the secret of this music.

(B) The intellectual interest of the poem.

(1) Consider the meaning of difficult passages, such as "Fairy tales of science." Explain the meaning of stanzas containing the following quotations: "Smote the chord of self"; "Cursed be social wants"; "That a sorrow's crown of sorrow"; "But the jingling of the guinea"; "Slowly comes a hungry people"; "Knowledge comes, but wisdom lingers."

(2) How long an interval elapsed between the writing of the above two poems? Does any change in style or trend of thought indicate the lapse of time? The earlier poem was and is immensely popular. Why? Why is the later one less popular?

(3) What is the story in the poem, and in what manner is it told? How is the story continued in "Sixty Years After"? Was Locksley Hall an inland or a seashore residence, and why? Describe the surroundings from suggestions in the poems. Sum up what the hero tells of himself and his love-story. What suggestions are there regarding the characters of Amy and Edith? Is the emotional side of the hero as finely balanced as the intellectual side? What light is thrown on the character of his love by his outbursts against Amy? Would it be fair to judge of Amy and her husband by what he says of them in his first anguish? Does he ever admit that he judged them harshly? If so, do you agree with him altogether? Was it well for Amy to marry as she did? When obedience to parental wishes and love are in conflict, which should be followed? Did the hero's evil prophecies come true? Whose love do you think was the greatest, Amy's, or his, or the Squire's?

(4) How does Tennyson all through the poem make it a parable of human life?

(C) The emotional influence of the poem. How has this poem influenced you? For many persons, Tennyson, out of a simple love-story, has made a prophecy of ideal love. Has he for you? For many persons Tennyson made poetry out of this simple story when he paralleled the tale of earthly passion with a vision of completer life, so vivid that the pain and tragedy of this present life come to be for us but the preparation for the better life to come, as the poet sings to us that "Through the ages one increasing purpose runs And the thoughts of men are widened with the process of the suns."

Has he to you in like manner through his poem given a truer conception of the nature and use of poetry?

Systematic study such as that suggested above will help in answering the questions, "What charm has this poem for us?" and "How does it put a deeper meaning into the events it records?" But it is difficult to frame formal questions the answers to which will show how a poem quickens life. The influence of a poem is so much a matter of temperament and of emotion, both of the author and of the reader, that one has to feel its power rather than to work it out logically. Poetry passes beyond prose in that it quickens life by moving us to feel its nobler emotions. It will teach its own lesson to the appreciative reader, and the student who gets fully into sympathy with a great poem will have his whole life made brighter. Class work, done sympathetically and sincerely, will aid in finding the truest interpretations. Yet studies teach not their own use. The higher blessings come to us unbidden if we as little children hope for them. We shall find the highest uses of poetry in remembering always that it may at its best come to us as an

                             "Angel of light
  Singing to welcome the pilgrims of the night."

[Signature: Francis Hovey Stoddard]


    By Francis Hovey Stoddard



    Photogravure from a life-photograph by Notman, Boston.

    "When our Drake has the luck to make their pride duck.
      And stoop to the lads of the Island!"

From engraving after the drawing by Sir John Gilbert, R.A.

    After a life-photograph by Elliott and Fry, London.

    After a life-photograph by Notman, Boston.

    From an engraving after the portrait by James Lonsdale.

    From an engraving.

    "To arms! to arms! ye brave!
    The avenging sword unsheathe."

From a photogravure after the painting by J.A.A. Pils.

    "My darling! ah, the glass is out!
    The bullets ring, the riders shout—
      No time for wine or sighing!
    There! bring my love the shattered glass—
    Charge! On the foe! No joys surpass
            Such dying!"

    From photogravure by Goupil, after a painting
    by Édouard Détaille

    "'Neath the blue morn, the sunny morn,
      He dies upon the tree,
    And he mourns that he can lose
      But one life for liberty."

    From photograph of the Statue by Frederick
    Macmonnies, in New York City Hall Park

    After a photograph from life.

    After a photograph from life.


* * * * *


* * * * *


      What constitutes a state?
  Not high-raised battlement or labored mound,
      Thick wall or moated gate;
  Not cities proud with spires and turrets crowned;
      Not bays and broad-armed ports,
  Where, laughing at the storm, rich navies ride;
      Not starred and spangled courts,
  Where low-browed baseness wafts perfume to pride.
      No:—men, high-minded men,
  With powers as far above dull brutes endued
      In forest, brake, or den,
  As beasts excel cold rocks and brambles rude,—
      Men who their duties know,
  But know their rights, and, knowing, dare maintain,
      Prevent the long-aimed blow,
  And crush the tyrant while they rend the chain;
      These constitute a State;
  And sovereign law, that State's collected will,
    O'er thrones and globes elate
  Sits empress, crowning good, repressing ill.
    Smit by her sacred frown,
  The fiend, Dissension, like a vapor sinks;
    And e'en the all-dazzling crown
  Hides his faint rays, and at her bidding shrinks.
    Such was this heaven-loved isle,
  Than Lesbos fairer and the Cretan shore!
    No more shall freedom smile?
  Shall Britons languish, and be men no more?
    Since all must life resign,
  Those sweet rewards which decorate the brave
    'Tis folly to decline,
  And steal inglorious to the silent grave.


* * * * *



  Breathes there the man with soul so dead
  Who never to himself hath said,
    This is my own, my native land!
  Whose heart has ne'er within him burned,
  As home his footsteps he hath turned
    From wandering on a foreign strand?
  If such there breathe, go, mark him well;
  For him no minstrel raptures swell;
  High though his titles, proud his name,
  Boundless his wealth as wish can claim,
  Despite those titles, power, and pelf,
  The wretch, concentred all in self,
  Living, shall forfeit fair renown,
  And, doubly dying, shall go down
  To the vile dust from whence he sprung,
  Unwept, unhonored, and unsung.


* * * * *


  There is a land, of every land the pride,
  Beloved by Heaven o'er all the world beside,
  Where brighter suns dispense serener light,
  And milder moons imparadise the night;
  A land of beauty, virtue, valor, truth,
  Time-tutored age, and love-exalted youth:
  The wandering mariner, whose eye explores
  The wealthiest isles, the most enchanting shores,
  Views not a realm so bountiful and fair,
  Nor breathes the spirit of a purer air.
  In every clime, the magnet of his soul,
  Touched by remembrance, trembles to that pole;
  For in this land of Heaven's peculiar race,
  The heritage of nature's noblest grace,
  There is a spot of earth supremely blest,
  A dearer, sweeter spot than all the rest,
  Where man, creation's tyrant, casts aside
  His sword and sceptre, pageantry and pride,
  While in his softened looks benignly blend
  The sire, the son, the husband, brother, friend.
  Here woman reigns; the mother, daughter, wife,
  Strew with fresh flowers the narrow way of life:
  In the clear heaven of her delightful eye
  An angel-guard of love and graces lie;
  Around her knees domestic duties meet,
  And fireside pleasures gambol at her feet.
  "Where shall that land, that spot of earth be found?"
  Art thou a man?—a patriot?—look around;
  O, thou shalt find, howe'er thy footsteps roam,
  That land thy country, and that spot thy home!

  Man, through all ages of revolving time,
  Unchanging man, in every varying clime,
  Deems his own land of every land the pride,
  Beloved by Heaven o'er the world beside;
  His home the spot of earth supremely blest,
  A dearer, sweeter spot than all the rest.


* * * * *


  Our Father Land! and wouldst thou know
    Why we should call it Father Land?
  It is that Adam here below
    Was made of earth by Nature's hand;
  And he our father, made of earth,
    Hath peopled earth on every hand;
  And we, in memory of his birth,
    Do call our country Father Land.

  At first, in Eden's bowers, they say,
    No sound of speech had Adam caught,
  But whistled like a bird all day,—
    And maybe 'twas for want of thought:
  But Nature, with resistless laws,
    Made Adam soon surpass the birds;
  She gave him lovely Eve because
    If he'd a wife they must have words.

  And so the native land, I hold,
    By male descent is proudly mine;
  The language, as the tale hath told,
    Was given in the female line.
  And thus we see on either hand
    We name our blessings whence they've sprung;
  We call our country Father Land,
    We call our language Mother Tongue.


* * * * *



  As some lone miser visiting his store,
  Bends at his treasure, counts, recounts it o'er;
  Hoards after hoards his rising raptures fill,
  Yet still he sighs, for hoards are wanting still:
  Thus to my breast alternate passions rise,
  Pleased with each good that heaven to man supplies:
  Yet oft a sigh prevails, and sorrows fall,
  To see the sum of human bliss so small;
  And oft I wish, amidst the scene to find
  Some spot to real happiness consigned,
  Where my worn soul, each wandering hope at rest,
  May gather bliss to see my fellows blest.
  But where to find that happiest spot below,
  Who can direct, when all pretend to know?
  The shuddering tenant of the frigid zone
  Boldly proclaims that happiest spot his own,
  Extols the treasures of his stormy seas,
  And his long nights of revelry and ease;
  The naked negro, planting at the line,
  Boasts of his golden sands and palmy wine,
  Basks in the glare, or stems the tepid wave,
  And thanks his gods for all the good they gave.
  Such is the patriot's boast where'er we roam,
  His first, best country, ever is at home.
  And yet, perhaps, if countries we compare,
  And estimate the blessings which they share,
  Though patriots flatter, still shall wisdom find
  An equal portion dealt to all mankind,
  As different good, by art or nature given,
  To different nations, makes their blessings even.


* * * * *


  "O World-God, give me Wealth!" the Egyptian cried.
  His prayer was granted. High as heaven behold
  Palace and Pyramid; the brimming tide
  Of lavish Nile washed all his land with gold.
  Armies of slaves toiled ant-wise at his feet,
  World-circling traffic roared through mart and street,
  His priests were gods, his spice-balmed kings enshrined
  Set death at naught in rock-ribbed charnels deep.
  Seek Pharaoh's race to-day, and ye shall find
  Rust and the moth, silence and dusty sleep.

  "O World-God, give me Beauty!" cried the Greek.
  His prayer was granted. All the earth became
  Plastic and vocal to his sense; each peak,
  Each grove, each stream, quick with Promethean flame,
  Peopled the world with imaged grace and light.
  The lyre was his, and his the breathing might
  Of the immortal marble, his the play
  Of diamond-pointed thought and golden tongue.
  Go seek the sunshine race. Ye find to-day
  A broken column and a lute unstrung.

  "O World-God, give me Power!" the Roman cried.
  His prayer was granted. The vast world was chained
  A captive to the chariot of his pride,
  The blood of myriad provinces was drained
  To feed that fierce, insatiable red heart—
  Invulnerably bulwarked every part
  With serried legions and with close-meshed Code.
  Within, the burrowing worm had gnawed its home:
  A roofless ruin stands where once abode
  The imperial race of everlasting Rome.

  "O God-head, give me Truth!" the Hebrew cried.
  His prayer was granted. He became the slave
  Of the Idea, a pilgrim far and wide,
  Cursed, hated, spurned, and scourged with none to save.
  The Pharaohs knew him, and when Greece beheld,
  His wisdom wore the hoary crown of Eld.
  Beauty he hath forsworn, and wealth and power.
  Seek him to-day, and find in every land.
  No fire consumes him, neither floods devour;
  Immortal through the lamp within his hand.


* * * * *



  England, with all thy faults, I love thee still,—
  My country! and, while yet a nook is left
  Where English minds and manners may be found,
  Shall be constrained to love thee. Though thy clime
  Be fickle, and thy year most part deformed
  With dripping rains, or withered by a frost,
  I would not yet exchange thy sullen skies,
  And fields without a flower, for warmer France
  With all her vines; nor for Ausonia's groves
  Of golden fruitage and her myrtle bowers.
  To shake thy senate, and from height sublime
  Of patriot eloquence to flash down fire
  Upon thy foes, was never meant my task:
  But I can feel thy fortunes, and partake
  Thy joys and sorrows with as true a heart
  As any thunderer there. And I can feel
  Thy follies too; and with a just disdain
  Frown at effeminates whose very looks
  Reflect dishonor on the land I love.
  How, in the name of soldiership and sense,
  Should England prosper, when such things, as smooth
  And tender as a girl, all essenced o'er
  With odors, and as profligate as sweet,
  Who sell their laurel for a myrtle wreath,
  And love when they should fight,—when such as these
  Presume to lay their hand upon the ark
  Of her magnificent and awful cause?
  Time was when it was praise and boast enough
  In every clime, and travel where we might,
  That we were born her children. Praise enough
  To fill the ambition of a private man,
  That Chatham's language was his mother tongue,
  And Wolfe's great name compatriot with his own.


* * * * *



  When Britain first, at Heaven's command,
    Arose from out the azure main,
  This was the charter of the land,
    And guardian angels sung the strain:
      Rule, Britannia, rule the waves!
      For Britons never will be slaves.

  The nations not so blest as thee
    Must in their turns to tyrants fall;
  Whilst thou shalt flourish, great and free,
    The dread and envy of them all.
      Rule, Britannia! etc.

  Still more majestic shalt thou rise,
    More dreadful from each foreign stroke;
  As the loud blasts that tear the skies
    Serve but to root thy native oak.
      Rule, Britannia! etc.

  Thee haughty tyrants ne'er shall tame;
    All their attempts to bend thee down
  Will but arouse thy generous flame,
    And work their woe—but thy renown.
      Rule, Britannia! etc.

  To thee belongs the rural reign;
    Thy cities shall with commerce shine;
  All thine shall be the subject main,
    And every shore it circles thine.
      Rule, Britannia! etc.

  The Muses, still with Freedom found,
    Shall to thy happy coast repair;
  Blest Isle! with matchless beauty crowned,
    And manly hearts to guard the fair.
      Rule, Britannia, rule the leaves!
      For Britons never will be slaves.


* * * * *



      What of the bow?
    The bow was made in England:
  Of true wood, of yew wood,
    The wood of English bows;
      So men who are free
      Love the old yew-tree
  And the land where the yew-tree grows.

      What of the cord?
    The cord was made in England:
  A rough cord, a tough cord,
    A cord that bowmen love;
      So we'll drain our jacks
      To the English flax
  And the land where the hemp was wove.

      What of the shaft?
    The shaft was cut in England:
  A long shaft, a strong shaft,
    Barbed and trim and true;
      So we'll drink all together
      To the gray goose feather,
  And the land where the gray goose flew.

      What of the men?
    The men were bred in England:
  The bowman—the yeoman—
    The lads of dale and fell.
      Here's to you—and to you!
     To the hearts that are true
  And the land where the true hearts dwell.


* * * * *


  When mighty roast beef was the Englishman's food,
  It ennobled our hearts, and enriched our blood;
  Our soldiers were brave, and our courtiers were good.
        O, the Roast Beef of old England,
        And O, the old English Roast Beef

  But since we have learned from effeminate France
  To eat their ragouts, as well as to dance,
  We are fed up with nothing but vain complaisance.
        O, the Roast Beef, etc.


* * * * *

  Our fathers of old were robust, stout, and strong,
  And kept open house with good cheer all day long,
  Which made their plump tenants rejoice in this song.
        O, the Roast Beef, etc.

  When good Queen Elizabeth sat on the throne,
  Ere coffee and tea, and such slip-slops, were known,
  The world was in terror, if e'en she did frown.
        O, the Roast Beef, etc.

  In those days, if fleets did presume on the main,
  They seldom or never returned back again;
  As witness the vaunting Armada of Spain.
        O, the Roast Beef, etc.

  O, then we had stomachs to eat and to fight,
  And when wrongs were cooking, to set ourselves right;
  But now we're—hum?—I could, but—good night;
        O, the Roast Beef of old England,
           And O, the old English Roast Beef

The last four stanzas added by RICHARD LOVERIDGE.

* * * * *


  Daddy Neptune, one day, to Freedom did say,
    If ever I lived upon dry land,
  The spot I should hit on would be little Britain!
    Says Freedom, "Why, that's my own island!"
        O, it's a snug little island!
        A right little, tight little island!
      Search the globe round, none can be found
        So happy as this little island.

  Julius Cæsar, the Roman, who yielded to no man,
    Came by water,—he couldn't come by land;
  And Dane, Pict, and Saxon, their homes turned their backs on,
    And all for the sake of our island.
        O, what a snug little island!
        They'd all have a touch at the island!
      Some were shot dead, some of them fled,
        And some stayed to live on the island.

  Then a very great war-man, called Billy the Norman,
    Cried, "Drat it, I never liked my land.
  It would be much more handy to leave this Normandy,
    And live on your beautiful island."
        Says he, "'Tis a snug little island;
        Sha'n't us go visit the island?"
      Hop, skip, and jump, there he was plump,
        And he kicked up a dust in the island.

  But party deceit helped the Normans to beat;
    Of traitors they managed to buy land;
  By Dane, Saxon, or Pict, Britons ne'er had been licked,
    Had they stuck to the king of their island.
        Poor Harold, the king of our island!
        He lost both his life and his island!
      That's all very true: what more could he do?
        Like a Briton he died for his island!

  The Spanish armada set out to invade—a,
    'Twill sure, if they ever come nigh land.
  They couldn't do less than tuck up Queen Bess,
    And take their full swing on the island.
        O the poor queen of the island!
        The Dons came to plunder the island;
      But snug in her hive the queen was alive,
        And "buzz" was the word of the island.

  These proud puffed-up cakes thought to make ducks and drakes
    Of our wealth; but they hardly could spy land,
  When our Drake had the luck to make their pride duck
    And stoop to the lads of the island!
        O, for the ships of the island!
        The good wooden walls of the island;
      Devil or Don, let them come on;
        And see how they'd come off the island!

  Since Freedom and Neptune have hitherto kept time,
    In each saying, "This shall be my land";
  Should the "Army of England," or all it could bring, land,
    We'd show 'em some play for the island.
        We'd fight for our right to the island;
        We'd give them enough of the island;
      Invaders should just—bite once at the dust,
        But not a bit more of the island.


* * * * *


  He tripped up the steps with a bow and a smile,
  Offering snuff to the chaplain the while,
  A rose at his button-hole that afternoon—
  'Twas the tenth of the month, and the month it was June.

  Then shrugging his shoulders, he looked at the man
  With the mask and the axe, and a murmuring ran
  Through the crowd, who below, were all pushing to see
  The gaoler kneel down, and receiving his fee.

  He looked at the mob, as they roared, with a stare,
  And took snuff again with a cynical air.
  "I'm happy to give but a moment's delight
  To the flower of my country agog for a sight."

  Then he looked at the block, and with scented cravat
  Dusted room for his neck, gayly doffing his hat,
  Kissed his hand to a lady, bent low to the crowd,
  Then smiling, turned round to the headsman and bowed.

  "God save King James!" he cried bravely and shrill,
  And the cry reached the houses at foot of the hill,
  "My friend with the axe, à votre service," he said;
  And ran his white thumb 'long the edge of the blade.

  When the multitude hissed he stood firm as a rock;
  Then kneeling, laid down his gay head on the block;
  He kissed a white rose,—in a moment 'twas red
  With the life of the bravest of any that bled.


* * * * *


  God save our gracious king!
  Long live our noble king!
    God save the king!
  Send him victorious,
  Happy and glorious,
  Long to reign over us—
    God save the king!

  O Lord our God, arise!
  Scatter his enemies,
    And make them fall;
  Confound their politics,
  Frustrate their knavish tricks;
  On him our hopes we fix,
    God save us all!

  Thy choicest gifts in store
  On him be pleased to pour;
    Long may he reign.
  May he defend our laws,
  And ever give us cause,
  To sing with heart and voice—
    God save the king!


* * * * *


  He filled the crystal goblet
    With golden-beaded wine:
  "Come, comrades, now, I bid ye—
    'To the true love of mine!'

  "Her forehead's pure and holy,
    Her hair is tangled gold,
  Her heart to me so tender,
    To others' love is cold.

  "So drain your glasses empty
    And fill me another yet;
  Two glasses at least for the dearest
    And sweetest girl, Lisette."

  Up rose a grizzled sergeant—
    "My true love I give thee,
  Three true loves blent in one love,
    A soldier's trinity.

  "Here's to the flag we follow,
    Here's to the land we serve,
  And here's to holy honor
    That doth the two preserve."

  Then rose they up around him,
    And raised their eyes above,
  And drank in solemn silence
    Unto the sergeant's love.


* * * * *


["Some Seiks, and a private of the Buffs, having remained behind with the grog carts, fell into the hands of the Chinese. On the next day they were brought before the authorities and ordered to perform Kotou. The Seiks obeyed, but Moyse, the English soldier, declared he would not prostrate himself before any Chinaman alive, and was immediately knocked upon the head, and his body thrown upon a dunghill."—China Correspondent of the London Times.]

  Last night, among his fellow roughs,
    He jested, quaffed, and swore;
  A drunken private of the Buffs,
    Who never looked before.
  To-day, beneath the foeman's frown,
    He stands in Elgin's place,
  Ambassador from Britain's crown,
    And type of all her race.

  Poor, reckless, rude, low-born, untaught,
    Bewildered, and alone,
  A heart, with English instinct fraught,
    He yet can call his own.
  Ay, tear his body limb from limb,
    Bring cord or axe or flame,
  He only knows that not through him
    Shall England come to shame.

  Far Kentish hop-fields round him seemed,
    Like dreams, to come and go;
  Bright leagues of cherry-blossom gleamed,
    One sheet of living snow;
  The smoke above his father's door
    In gray soft eddyings hung;
  Must he then watch it rise no more,
    Doomed by himself so young?

  Yes, honor calls!—with strength like steel
    He put the vision by;
  Let dusky Indians whine and kneel,
    An English lad must die.
  And thus, with eyes that would not shrink,
    With knee to man unbent,
  Unfaltering on its dreadful brink,
    To his red grave he went.

  Vain mightiest fleets of iron framed,
    Vain those all-shattering guns,
  Unless proud England keep untamed
    The strong heart of her sons;
  So let his name through Europe ring,—
    A man of mean estate,
  Who died, as firm as Sparta's king,
    Because his soul was great.

[Footnote A: The "Buffs" are the East Kent Regiment.]




  What profits it, O England, to prevail
    In camp and mart and council, and bestrew
    With argosies thy oceans, and renew
  With tribute levied on each golden gale
  Thy treasuries, if thou canst hear the wail
    Of women martyred by the turbaned crew,
    Whose tenderest mercy was the sword that slew,
  And lift no hand to wield the purging flail?
    We deemed of old thou held'st a charge from Him
    Who watches girdled by his seraphim,
  To smite the wronger with thy destined rod.
    Wait'st thou his sign? Enough, the unanswered cry
    Of virgin souls for vengeance, and on high
  The gathering blackness of the frown of God!


* * * * *


  Set in this stormy Northern sea,
    Queen of these restless fields of tide,
  England! what shall men say of thee,
    Before whose feet the worlds divide?

  The earth, a brittle globe of glass,
    Lies in the hollow of thy hand,
  And through its heart of crystal pass,
    Like shadows through a twilight land,

  The spears of crimson-suited war,
    The long white-crested waves of fight,
  And all the deadly fires which are
    The torches of the lords of Night.

  The yellow leopards, strained and lean,
    The treacherous Russian knows so well,
  With gaping blackened jaws are seen
    To leap through hail of screaming shell.

  The strong sea-lion of England's wars
    Hath left his sapphire cave of sea,
  To battle with the storm that mars
    The star of England's chivalry.

  The brazen-throated clarion blows
    Across the Pathan's reedy fen,
  And the high steeps of Indian snows
    Shake to the tread of armèd men.

  And many an Afghan chief, who lies
    Beneath his cool pomegranate-trees,
  Clutches his sword in fierce surmise
    When on the mountain-side he sees

  The fleet-foot Marri scout, who comes
    To tell how he hath heard afar
  The measured roll of English drums
    Beat at the gates of Kandahar.

  For southern wind and east wind meet
    Where, girt and crowned by sword and fire,
  England with bare and bloody feet
    Climbs the steep road of wide empire.

  O lonely Himalayan height,
    Gray pillar of the Indian sky,
  Where saw'st thou last in clanging fight
    Our wingèd dogs of Victory?

  The almond groves of Samarcand,
    Bokhara, where red lilies blow,
  And Oxus, by whose yellow sand
    The grave white-turbaned merchants go;

  And on from thence to Ispahan,
    The gilded garden of the sun,
  Whence the long dusty caravan
    Brings cedar and vermilion;

  And that dread city of Cabool
    Set at the mountain's scarpèd feet,
  Whose marble tanks are ever full
    With water for the noonday heat,

  Where through the narrow straight Bazaar
    A little maid Circasian
  Is led, a present from the Czar
    Unto some old and bearded khan,—

  Here have our wild war-eagles flown,
    And flapped wide wings in fiery flight;
  But the sad dove, that sits alone
    In England—she hath no delight.

  In vain the laughing girl will lean
    To greet her love with love-lit eyes:
  Down in some treacherous black ravine,
    Clutching his flag, the dead boy lies.

  And many a moon and sun will see
    The lingering wistful children wait
  To climb upon their father's knee;
    And in each house made desolate

  Pale women who have lost their lord
    Will kiss the relics of the slain—
  Some tarnished epaulette—some sword—
    Poor toys to soothe such anguished pain.

  For not in quiet English fields
    Are these, our brothers, lain to rest,
  Where we might deck their broken shields
    With all the flowers the dead love best.

  For some are by the Delhi walls,
    And many in the Afghan land,
  And many where the Ganges falls
    Through seven mouths of shifting sand.

  And some in Russian waters lie,
    And others in the seas which are
  The portals to the East, or by
    The wind-swept heights of Trafalgar.

  O wandering graves! O restless sleep!
    O silence of the sunless day!
  O still ravine! O stormy deep!
    Give up your prey! Give up your prey!

  And those whose wounds are never healed,
    Whose weary race is never won,
  O Cromwell's England! must thou yield
    For every inch of ground a son?

  Go! crown with thorns thy gold-crowned head,
    Change thy glad song to song of pain;
  Wind and wild wave have got thy dead,
    And will not yield them back again.

  Wave and wild wind and foreign shore
    Possess the flower of English land—
  Lips that thy lips shall kiss no more,
    Hands that shall never clasp thy hand.

  What profit now that we have bound
    The whole round world with nets of gold,
  If hidden in our heart is found
    The care that groweth never old?

  What profit that our galleys ride,
    Pine-forest like, on every main?
  Ruin and wreck are at our side,
    Grim warders of the House of pain.

  Where are the brave, the strong, the fleet?
    Where is our English chivalry?
  Wild grasses are their burial-sheet,
    And sobbing waves their threnody.

  O loved ones lying far away,
    What word of love can dead lips send?
  O wasted dust! O senseless clay!
    Is this the end? is this the end?

  Peace, peace! we wrong the noble dead
    To vex their solemn slumber so;
  Though, childless, and with thorn-crowned head,
    Up the steep road must England go,

  Yet when this fiery web is spun,
    Her watchmen shall descry from far
  The young Republic like a sun
    Rise from these crimson seas of war.


* * * * *


      All hail; thou noble land,
        Our Fathers' native soil!
      O, stretch thy mighty hand,
        Gigantic grown by toil,
  O'er the vast Atlantic wave to our shore!
      For thou with magic might
      Canst reach to where the light
      Of Phoebus travels bright
      The world o'er!

      The genius of our clime
        From his pine-embattled steep
      Shall hail the guest sublime;
        While the Tritons of the deep
  With their conchs the kindred league shall proclaim.
      Then let the world combine,—
      O'er the main our naval line
      Like the Milky Way shall shine
        Bright in flame!

      Though ages long have passed
        Since our Fathers left their home,
      Their pilot in the blast,
        O'er untravelled seas to roam,
  Yet lives the blood of England in our veins!
      And shall we not proclaim
      That blood of honest fame
      Which no tyranny can tame
        By its chains?

      While the language free and bold
        Which the Bard of Avon sung,
      In which our Milton told
        How the vault of heaven rung
  When Satan, blasted, fell with his host;
      While this, with reverence meet,
      Ten thousand echoes greet,
      From rock to rock repeat
        Round our coast;

      While the manners, while the arts,
        That mould a nation's soul,
      Still cling around our hearts,—
        Between let Ocean roll,
  Our joint communion breaking with the sun:
      Yet still from either beach
      The voice of blood shall reach,
      More audible than speech,
        "We are One."


* * * * *


      First drink a health, this solemn night,
        A health to England, every guest:
      That man's the best cosmopolite
        Who loves his native country best.
      May Freedom's oak for ever live
        With stronger life from day to day:
      That man's the best Conservative
        Who lops the moulded branch away.
            Hands all round!
        God the tyrant's hope confound!
  To this great cause of Freedom drink, my friends,
  And the great name of England, round and round.

      A health to Europe's honest men!
        Heaven guard them from her tyrants' jails!
      From wronged Poerio's noisome den,
        From iron limbs and tortured nails!
      We curse the crimes of southern kings,
        The Russian whips and Austrian rods:
      We likewise have our evil things,—
        Too much we make our ledgers, gods.
            Yet hands all round!
        God the tyrant's cause confound!
  To Europe's better health we drink, my friends,
  And the great name of England, round and round!

      What health to France, if France be she,
        Whom martial progress only charms?
      Yet tell her—better to be free
        Than vanquish all the world in arms.
      Her frantic city's flashing heats
        But fire, to blast the hopes of men.
      Why change the titles of your streets?
        You fools, you'll want them all again.
            Hands all round!
        God the tyrant's cause confound!
  To France, the wiser France, we drink, my friends,
  And the great name of England, round and round.

      Gigantic daughter of the West,
        We drink to thee across the flood!
      We know thee and we love thee best;
        For art thou not of British blood?
      Should war's mad blast again be blown,
        Permit not thou the tyrant powers
      To fight thy mother here alone,
        But let thy broadsides roar with ours.
            Hands all round!
        God the tyrant's cause confound!
  To our great kinsman of the West, my friends,
  And the great name of England, round and round.

      Oh rise, our strong Atlantic sons,
        When war against our freedom springs!
      Oh, speak to Europe through your guns!
        They can be understood by kings.
      You must not mix our Queen with those
        That wish to keep their people fools:
      Our freedom's foemen are her foes;
        She comprehends the race she rules.
          Hands all round!
        God the tyrant's cause confound!
  To our great kinsman in the West, my friends,
  And the great cause of Freedom, round and round.


* * * * *


  God of our fathers, known of old,—
    Lord of our far-flung battle line,—
  Beneath whose awful hand we hold
    Dominion over palm and pine,—
  Lord God of Hosts, be with us yet,
  Lest we forget,—lest we forget!

  The tumult and the shouting dies,
    The captains and the kings depart:
  Still stands thine ancient sacrifice,—
    An humble and a contrite heart.
  Lord God of Hosts, be with us yet,
  Lest we forget,—lest we forget!

  Far-called, our navies melt away;
    On dune and headland sinks the fire.
  Lo! all our pomp of yesterday
  Is one with Nineveh and Tyre!
    Judge of the nations, spare us yet,
  Lest we forget,—lest we forget!

  If, drunk with sight of power, we loose
    Wild tongues that have not thee in awe,
  Such boasting as the Gentiles use
    Or lesser breeds without the law,—
  Lord God of Hosts, be with us yet,
  Lest we forget,—lest we forget!

  For heathen heart that puts her trust
    In reeking tube and iron shard,
  All valiant dust that builds on dust,
    And guarding calls not thee to guard,
  For frantic boasts and foolish word,
  Thy mercy on thy people, Lord!


* * * * *


  She stands, a thousand-wintered tree,
    By countless morns impearled;
  Her broad roots coil beneath the sea,
    Her branches sweep the world;
  Her seeds, by careless winds conveyed,
    Clothe the remotest strand
  With forests from her scatterings made,
  New nations fostered in her shade,
    And linking land with land.

  O ye by wandering tempest sown
    'Neath every alien star,
  Forget not whence the breath was blown
    That wafted you afar!
  For ye are still her ancient seed
    On younger soil let fall—
  Children of Britain's island-breed,
  To whom the Mother in her need
    Perchance may one day call.


* * * * *



  O Caledonia! stern and wild,
  Meet nurse for a poetic child!
  Land of brown heath and shaggy wood,
  Land of the mountain and the flood,
  Land of my sires! what mortal hand
  Can e'er untie the filial band
  That knits me to thy rugged strand?
  Still, as I view each well-known scene,
  Think what is now, and what hath been,
  Seems, as to me, of all bereft,
  Sole friends thy woods and streams were left;
  And thus I love them better still,
  Even in extremity of ill.
  By Yarrow's stream still let me stray,
  Though none should guide my feeble way;
  Still feel the breeze down Ettrick break,
  Although it chilled my withered cheek;
  Still lay my head by Teviot stone,
  Though there, forgotten and alone,
  The bard may draw his parting groan.


* * * * *




  "Ruin seize thee, ruthless King!
    Confusion on thy banners wait;
  Tho' fanned by Conquest's crimson wing,
    They mock the air with idle state,
  Helm, nor hauberk's twisted mail,
  Nor e'en thy virtues, Tyrant, shall avail
    To save thy secret soul from nightly fears,
    From Cambria's curse, from Cambria's tears!"
  Such were the sounds that o'er the crested pride
    Of the first Edward scattered wild dismay,
  As down the steep of Snowdon's shaggy side
    He wound with toilsome march his long array.
  Stout Glo'ster stood aghast in speechless trance:
  "To arms!" cried Mortimer, and couched his quiv'ring lance.

    On a rock, whose haughty brow
  Frowns o'er cold Conway's foaming flood,
    Robed in the sable garb of woe,
  With haggard eyes the poet stood:
  (Loose his beard, and hoary hair
  Streamed, like a meteor, to the troubled air)
  And with a master's hand, and prophet's fire,
  Struck the deep sorrows of his lyre.
  "Hark how each giant oak, and desert cave,
    Sighs to the torrent's awful voice beneath!
  O'er thee, O King! their hundred arms they wave,
    Revenge on thee in hoarser murmurs breathe;
  Vocal no more, since Cambria's fatal day,
  To high-born Hoel's harp, or soft Llewellyn's lay.

    "Cold is Cadwallo's tongue,
    That hushed the stormy main:
  Brave Urien sleeps upon his craggy bed:
    Mountains, ye mourn in vain
    Modred, whose magic song
  Made huge Plinlimmon bow his cloud-topt head.
    On dreary Arvon's shore they lie,
  Smeared with gore, and ghastly pale;
  Far, far aloof th' affrighted ravens sail;
    The famished eagle screams, and passes by.
  Dear lost companions of my tuneful art,
    Dear as the light that visits these sad eyes,
  Dear as the ruddy drops that warm my heart,
    Ye died amidst your dying country's cries—
  No more I weep. They do not sleep.
   On yonder cliffs, a grisly band,
  I see them sit, they linger yet,
    Avengers of their native land:
  With me in dreadful harmony they join,
  And weave with bloody hands the tissues of thy line.


    "Weave the warp, and weave the woof,
  The winding sheet of Edward's race.
    Give ample room, and verge enough
  The characters of hell to trace.
  Mark the year, and mark the night,
  When Severn shall re-echo with affright
  The shrieks of death, thro' Berkeley's roof that ring,
  Shrieks of an agonizing king!
    She-wolf of France, with unrelenting fangs,
  That tear'st the bowels of thy mangled mate,
    From thee be born, who o'er thy country hangs
  The scourge of Heaven. What Terrors round him wait!
  Amazement in his van, with Flight combined,
  And Sorrow's faded form, and solitude behind.

    "Mighty victor, mighty lord!
  Low on his funeral couch he lies!
    No pitying heart, no eye, afford
  A tear to grace his obsequies.
  Is the sable warrior fled?
  Thy son is gone. He rests among the dead.
  The swarm, that in thy noon-tide beam were born,
  Gone to salute the rising morn.
  Fair laughs the morn, and soft the zephyr blows.
    While proudly riding o'er the azure realm
  In gallant trim the gilded vessel goes;
    Youth on the prow, and Pleasure at the helm;
  Regardless of the sweeping whirlwind's sway,
  That, hushed in grim repose, expects his evening prey.

    "Fill high the sparkling bowl,
  The rich repast prepare,
    Reft of a crown, he yet may share the feast;
  Close by the regal chair
    Fell Thirst and Famine scowl
    A baleful smile upon their baffled guest.
  Heard ye the din of battle bray,
    Lance to lance, and horse to horse?
    Long years of havoc, urged their destined course,
  And through the kindred squadrons mow their way.
    Ye towers of Julius, London's lasting shame,
  With many a foul and midnight murder fed,
    Revere his consort's faith, his father's fame,
  And spare the meek usurper's holy head.
  Above, below, the rose of snow,
    Twined with her blushing foe, we spread:
  The bristled Boar in infant-gore
    Wallows beneath the thorny shade.
  Now, brothers, bending o'er the accursèd loom,
  Stamp we our vengeance deep, and ratify his doom.


    "Edward, lo! to sudden fate
  (Weave we the woof. The thread is spun.)
    Half of thy heart we consecrate.
  (The web is wove. The work is done.)
  Stay, oh stay! nor thus forlorn
  Leave me unblessed, unpitied, here to mourn:
  In yon bright track, that fires the western skies,
  They melt, they vanish from my eyes.
  But oh! what solemn scenes on Snowdon's height
    Descending slow their glittering skirts unroll?
  Visions of glory, spare my aching sight!
    Ye unborn ages, crowd not on my soul!
  No more our long-lost Arthur we bewail.
  All hail, ye genuine kings, Britannia's issue, hail!

    "Girt with many a baron bold
  Sublime their starry fronts they rear;
    And gorgeous dames, and statesmen old
  In bearded majesty, appear.
  In the midst a form divine!
  Her eye proclaims her of the Briton line:
  Her lion-port, her awe-commanding face,
  Attempered sweet to virgin-grace.
  What strings symphonious tremble in the air,
    What strains of vocal transport round her play!
  Hear from the grave, great Taliessin, hear;
    They breathe a soul to animate thy clay.
  Bright Rapture calls, and soaring as she sings,
  Waves in the eye of heaven her many-colored wings.

   "The verse adorn again,
    Fierce War, and faithful Love,
  And Truth severe by fairy fiction drest.
    In buskined measure move
  Pale Grief and pleasing Pain,
  With Horror, tyrant of the throbbing breast.
    A voice, as of the cherub-choir,
  Gales from blooming Eden bear;
  And distant warblings lessen on my ear,
    That lost in long futurity expire.
  Fond impious man, think'st thou yon sanguine cloud,
    Raised by thy breath, has quenched the orb of day?
  To-morrow he repairs the golden flood,
    And warms the nations with redoubled ray.
  Enough for me; with joy I see
    The different doom our fates assign.
  Be thine Despair, and sceptred Care,
    To triumph, and to die, are mine."
  He spoke and headlong from the mountain's height
  Deep in the roaring tide he plunged to endless night.


* * * * *


  My heart's in the Highlands, my heart is not here;
  My heart's in the Highlands a-chasing the deer;
  Chasing the wild deer, and following the roe.
  My heart's in the Highlands, wherever I go.
  Farewell to the Highlands, farewell to the North,
  The birthplace of valor, the country of worth;
  Wherever I wander, wherever I rove,
  The hills of the Highlands forever I love.

  Farewell to the mountains high covered with snow;
  Farewell to the straths and green valleys below;
  Farewell to the forests and wild-hanging woods;
  Farewell to the torrents and loud-pouring floods.
  My heart's in the Highlands, my heart is not here;
  My heart's in the Highlands a-chasing the deer;
  Chasing the wild deer, and following the roe.
  My heart's in the Highlands wherever I go.


* * * * *


  From the bonny bells of heather
    They brewed a drink long-syne,
  Was sweeter far than honey,
    Was stronger far than wine.
  They brewed it and they drank it,
    And lay in a blessed swound
  For days and days together
    In the dwellings underground.

  There rose a king in Scotland,
    A fell man to his foes,
  He smote the Picts in battle,
    He hunted them like roes.
  Over miles of the red mountain
    He hunted as they fled,
  And strewed the dwarfish bodies
    Of the dying and the dead.

  Summer came in the country,
    Red was the heather bell;
  But the manner of the brewing
    Was none alive to tell.
  In graves that were like children's
    On many a mountain head,
  The Brewsters of the Heather
    Lay numbered with the dead.

  The king in the red moorland
    Rode on a summer's day;
  And the bees hummed, and the curlews
    Cried beside the way.
  The king rode, and was angry;
    Black was his brow and pale,
  To rule in a land of heather
    And lack the Heather Ale.

  It fortuned that his vassals,
    Riding free on the heath,
  Came on a stone that was fallen
    And vermin hid beneath.
  Rudely plucked from their hiding,
    Never a word they spoke:
  A son and his agèd father—
    Last of the dwarfish folk.

  The king sat high on his charger,
    He looked on the little men;
  And the dwarfish and swarthy couple
    Looked at the king again.
  Down by the shore he had them;
    And there on the giddy brink—
  "I will give you life, ye vermin,
    For the secret of the drink."

  There stood the son and father
    And they looked high and low;
  The heather was red around them,
    The sea rumbled below.
  And up and spoke the father,
    Shrill was his voice to hear;
  "I have a word in private,
    A word for the royal ear.

  "Life is dear to the agèd,
    And honor a little thing;
  I would gladly sell the secret,"
    Quoth the Pict to the King.
  His voice was small as a sparrow's,
    And shrill and wonderful clear:
  "I would gladly sell my secret,
    Only my son I fear.

  "For life is a little matter,
    And death is nought to the young;
  And I dare not sell my honor
    Under the eye of my son.
  Take him, O king, and bind him,
    And cast him far in the deep;
  And it's I will tell the secret.
    That I have sworn to keep."

  They took the son and bound him,
    Neck and heels in a thong,
  And a lad took him and swung him,
    And flung him far and strong,
  And the sea swallowed his body,
    Like that of a child of ten;—
  And there on the cliff stood the father,
    Last of the dwarfish men.

  "True as the word I told you:
    Only my son I feared;
  For I doubt the sapling courage
    That goes without the beard.
  But now in vain is the torture,
    Fire shall never avail:
  Here dies in my bosom
    The secret of Heather Ale."


* * * * *


[James Graham, Marquis of Montrose, was executed in Edinburgh, May 21, 1650, for an attempt to overthrow the Commonwealth and restore Charles II.]

  Come hither, Evan Cameron!
    Come, stand behind my knee—
  I hear the river roaring down
    Toward the wintry sea.
  There's shouting on the mountain-side,
    There's war within the blast—
  Old faces look upon me,
    Old forms go trooping past.
  I hear the pibroch wailing
    Amidst the din of fight,
  And my dim spirit wakes again
    Upon the verge of night.

  'Twas I that led the Highland host
    Through wild Lochaber's snows,
  What time the plaided clans came down
    To battle with Montrose.
  I've told thee how the Southrons fell
    Beneath the broad claymore,
  And how we smote the Campbell clan
    By Inverlochy's shore.
  I've told thee how we swept Dundee,
    And tamed the Lindsays' pride;
  But never have I told thee yet
    How the great Marquis died.

  A traitor sold him to his foes;—
    O deed of deathless shame!
  I charge thee, boy, if e'er thou meet
    With one of Assynt's name—
  Be it upon the mountain's side,
    Or yet within the glen,
  Stand he in martial gear alone,
    Or backed by armèd men—
  Face him as thou wouldst face the man
    Who wronged thy sire's renown;
  Remember of what blood thou art,
    And strike the caitiff down!

  They brought him to the Watergate,
    Hard bound with hempen span.
  As though they held a lion there,
    And not a 'fenceless man.
  They set him high upon a cart—
    The hangman rode below—
  They drew his hands behind his back,
    And bared his noble brow.
  Then, as a hound is slipped from leash,
    They cheered the common throng,
  And blew the note with yell and shout,
    And bade him pass along.

  It would have made a brave man's heart
    Grow sad and sick that day.
  To watch the keen, malignant eyes
    Bent down on that array.
  There stood the Whig west-country lords
    In balcony and bow;
  There sat their gaunt and withered dames,
    And their daughters all a-row.
  And every open window
    Was full as full might be
  With black-robed Covenanting carles,
    That goodly sport to see!

  But when he came, though pale and wan,
    He looked so great and high,
  So noble was his manly front,
    So calm his steadfast eye;—
  The rabble rout forbore to shout,
    And each man held his breath,
  For well they knew the hero's soul
    Was face to face with death.
  And then a mournful shudder
    Through all the people crept,
  And some that came to scoff at him
    Now turned aside and wept.

  But onward—always onward,
    In silence and in gloom,
  The dreary pageant labored,
    Till it reached the house of doom.
  Then first a woman's voice was heard
    In jeer and laughter loud,
  And an angry cry and a hiss arose
    From the heart of the tossing crowd:
  Then, as the Graeme looked upward,
    He saw the ugly smile
  Of him who sold his king for gold—
    The master-fiend Argyle!

  The Marquis gazed a moment,
    And nothing did he say,
  But the cheek of Argyle grew ghastly pale,
    And he turned his eyes away.
  The painted harlot by his side,
    She shook through every limb,
  For a roar like thunder swept the street,
    And hands were clenched at him;
  And a Saxon soldier cried aloud,
    "Back, coward, from thy place!
  For seven long years thou hast not dared
    To look him in the face."

  Had I been there with sword in hand,
    And fifty Camerons by,
  That day through high Dunedin's streets
    Had pealed the slogan-cry.
  Not all their troops of trampling horse,
    Nor might of mailèd men—
  Not all the rebels in the south
    Had borne us backward then!
  Once more his foot on Highland heath
    Had trod as free as air,
  Or I, and all who bore my name,
    Been laid around him there!

  It might not be. They placed him next
    Within the solemn hall,
  Where once the Scottish kings were throned
    Amidst their nobles all.
  But there was dust of vulgar feet
    On that polluted floor,
  And perjured traitors filled the place
    Where good men sate before.
  With savage glee came Warriston
    To read the murderous doom;
  And then uprose the great Montrose
    In the middle of the room:

  "Now, by my faith as belted knight
    And by the name I bear,
  And by the bright St. Andrew's cross
    That waves above us there—
  Yea, by a greater, mightier oath—
    And O that such should be!—
  By that dark stream of royal blood
    That lies 'twixt you and me—
  I have not sought in battle-field
    A wreath of such renown,
  Nor dared I hope on my dying day
    To win the martyr's crown!

  "There is a chamber far away
    Where sleep the good and brave,
  But a better place ye have named for me
    Than by my father's grave.
  For truth and right, 'gainst treason's might,
    This hand has always striven,
  And ye raise it up for a witness still
    In the eye of earth and heaven.
  Then nail my head on yonder tower—
    Give every town a limb—
  And God who made shall gather them:
    I go from you to Him!"

  The morning dawned full darkly,
    The rain came flashing down,
  And the jagged streak of the levin bolt
    Lit up the gloomy town.
  The thunder crashed across the heaven,
    The fatal hour was come;
  Yet aye broke in, with muffled beat,
    The 'larum of the drum.
  There was madness on the earth below
    And anger in the sky,
  And young and old, and rich and poor,
    Came forth to see him die.

  Ah God! that ghastly gibbet!
    How dismal 'tis to see
  The great tall spectral skeleton,
    The ladder and the tree!
  Hark! hark! it is the clash of arms,—
    The bells begin to toll,—
  "He is coming! he is coming!
    God's mercy on his soul!"
  One last long peal of thunder,—
    The clouds are cleared away.
  And the glorious sun once more looks down
    Amidst the dazzling day.

  "He is coming! he is coming!"
    Like a bridegroom from his room
  Came the hero from his prison
    To the scaffold and the doom.
  There was glory on his forehead,
    There was lustre in his eye,
  And he never walked to battle
    More proudly than to die.
  There was color in his visage,
    Though the cheeks of all were wan;
  And they marvelled as they saw him pass,
    That great and goodly man!

  He mounted up the scaffold,
    And he turned him to the crowd;
  But they dared not trust the people,
    So he might not speak aloud.
  But he looked upon the heavens,
    And they were clear and blue,
  And in the liquid ether
    The eye of God shone through:
  Yet a black and murky battlement
    Lay resting on the hill,
  As though the thunder slept within,—
    All else was calm and still.

  The grim Geneva ministers
    With anxious scowl drew near,
  As you have seen the ravens flock
    Around the dying deer.
  He would not deign them word nor sign,
    But alone he bent the knee;
  And veiled his face for Christ's dear grace
    Beneath the gallows-tree.
  Then, radiant and serene, he rose,
    And cast his cloak away;
  For he had ta'en his latest look
    Of earth and sun and day.

  A beam of light fell o'er him,
    Like a glory round the shriven,
  And he climbed the lofty ladder
    As it were the path to heaven.
  Then came a flash from out the cloud,
    And a stunning thunder-roll;
  And no man dared to look aloft,—
    Fear was on every soul.
  There was another heavy sound,
    A hush, and then a groan;
  And darkness swept across the sky,—
    The work of death was done!


* * * * *


  March, march, Ettrick and Teviotdale!
    Why the de'il dinna ye march forward in order?
  March, march, Eskdale and Liddesdale!
    All the Blue Bonnets are over the Border!
            Many a banner spread
            Flutters above your head,
  Many a crest that is famous in story!—
            Mount and make ready, then,
            Sons of the mountain glen,
  Fight for the queen and our old Scottish glory.

  Come from the hills where your hirsels are grazing;
    Come from the glen of the buck and the roe;
  Come to the crag where the beacon is blazing;
    Come with the buckler, the lance, and the bow.
            Trumpets are sounding;
            War-steeds are bounding;
  Stand to your arms, and march in good order,
             England shall many a day
             Tell of the bloody fray,
  When the Blue Bonnets came over the Border.


* * * * *


  Oh! why left I my hame?
    Why did I cross the deep?
  Oh! why left I the land
    Where my forefathers sleep?
  I sigh for Scotia's shore,
    And I gaze across the sea,
  But I canna get a blink
    O' my ain countrie.

  The palm-tree waveth high,
    And fair the myrtle springs;
  And, to the Indian maid,
    The bulbul sweetly sings.
  But I dinna see the broom
    Wi' its tassels on the lee,
  Nor hear the lintie's sang
    O' my ain countrie.

  Oh! here no Sabbath bell
    Awakes the Sabbath morn,
  Nor song of reapers heard
    Among the yellow corn:
  For the tyrant's voice is here,
    And the wail of slaverie;
  But the sun of freedom shines
    In my ain countrie.

  There's a hope for every woe,
    And a balm for every pain,
  But the first joys o' our heart
    Come never back again.
  There's a track upon the deep,
    And a path across the sea:
  But the weary ne'er return
    To their ain countrie.


* * * * *


  The savage loves his native shore,
    Though rude the soil and chill the air;
  Then well may Erin's sons adore
    Their isle which nature formed so fair,
  What flood reflects a shore so sweet
    As Shannon great or pastoral Bann?
  Or who a friend or foe can meet
    So generous as an Irishman?

  His hand is rash, his heart is warm,
    But honesty is still his guide;
  None more repents a deed of harm,
    And none forgives with nobler pride;
  He may be duped, but won't be dared—
    More fit to practise than to plan;
  He dearly earns his poor reward,
    And spends it like an Irishman.

  If strange or poor, for you he'll pay,
    And guide to where you safe may be;
  If you're his guest, while e'er you stay,
    His cottage holds a jubilee.
  His inmost soul he will unlock,
    And if he may your secrets scan,
  Your confidence he scorns to mock,
    For faithful is an Irishman.

  By honor bound in woe or weal,
    Whate'er she bids he dares to do;
  Try him with bribes—they won't prevail;
    Prove him in fire—you'll find him true.
  He seeks not safety, let his post
    Be where it ought in danger's van;
  And if the field of fame be lost,
    It won't be by an Irishman.

  Erin! loved land! from age to age,
    Be thou more great, more famed, and free,
  May peace be thine, or shouldst thou wage
    Defensive war, cheap victory.
  May plenty bloom in every field
    Which gentle breezes softly fan,
  And cheerful smiles serenely gild
    The home of every Irishman.


* * * * *


A health to you, Piper,
     And your pipes silver-tongued, clear and sweet in their crooning

  Full of the music they gathered at morn
    On your high heather hills from the lark on the wing,
  From the blackbird at eve on the blossoming thorn,
    From the little green linnet whose plaining they sing,
  And the joy and the hope in the heart of the Spring,
        O, Turlough MacSweeney!

  Play us our Eire's most sorrowful songs,
    As she sits by her reeds near the wash of the wave,
  That the coldest may thrill at the count of her wrongs,
    That the sword may flash forth from the scabbard to save,
  And the wide land awake at the wrath of the brave,
        O, Turlough MacSweeney!

  Play as the bards played in days long ago,
    When O'Donnell, arrayed for the foray or feast,
  With your kinsmen from Bannat and Fannat and Doe,
    With piping and harping, and blessing of priest,
  Rode out in the blaze of the sun from the East,
            O, Turlough MacSweeney!

  Play as they played in that rapturous hour
    When the clans heard in gladness his young fiery call
  Who burst from the gloom of the Sassenach tower,
    And sped to the welcome in dear Donegal,
  Then on to his hailing as chieftain of all—
            O, Turlough MacSweeney!

  Play as they played, when, a trumpet of war,
    His voice for the rally, pealed up to the blue,
  And the kerns from the hills and the glens and the scaur
    Marched after the banner of conquering Hugh—
  Led into the fray by a piper like you,
            O, Turlough MacSweeney!

  And surely no note of such music shall fail,
    Wherever the speech of our Eire is heard,
  To foster the hope of the passionate Gael,
    To fan the old hatred, relentless when stirred,
  To strengthen our souls for the strife to be dared,
            O, Turlough MacSweeney!

  May your pipes, silver-tongued, clear and sweet in their crooning,
  Keep the magic they captured at dawning and even
  From the blackbird at home, and the lark on its journey,
  From the thrush on its spray, and the little green linnet.
            A health to you, Piper!

ANNA MACMANUS (Ethna Carbery).

* * * * *


      My love to fight the Saxon goes,
        And bravely shines his sword of steel;
      A heron's feather decks his brows,
        And a spur on either heel;
      His steed is blacker than the sloe,
        And fleeter than the falling star;
      Amid the surging ranks he'll go
        And shout for joy of war.
  Twinkle, twinkle, pretty spindle; let the white wool drift and dwindle.
    Oh! we weave a damask doublet for my love's coat of steel.
  Hark! the timid, turning treadle crooning soft, old-fashioned ditties
    To the low, slow murmur of the brown round wheel.

      My love is pledged to Ireland's fight;
        My love would die for Ireland's weal,
      To win her back her ancient right,
        And make her foemen reel.
      Oh! close I'll clasp him to my breast
        When homeward from the war he comes;
      The fires shall light the mountain's crest,
        The valley peal with drums.
  Twinkle, twinkle, pretty spindle; let the white wool drift and dwindle.
    Oh! we weave a damask doublet for my love's coat of steel.
  Hark! the timid, turning treadle crooning soft old-fashioned ditties
    To the low, slow murmur of the brown round wheel.


* * * * *


[Footnote A: Variation of an old street song of about 1798. Sung in Dion
Boucicault's play "The Shan Van Voght."]

  O Paddy dear, an' did you hear the news that's goin' round?
  The shamrock is forbid by law to grow on Irish ground;
  St. Patrick's Day no more we'll keep; his colors can't be seen:
  For there's a cruel law agin' the wearin' of the green.
  I met with Napper Tandy, and he tuk me by the hand,
  And he said, "How's poor ould Ireland, and how does she stand?"
  She's the most distressful country that ever yet was seen:
  They are hangin' men and women there for wearin' of the green.

  An' if the color we must wear is England's cruel red,
  Sure Ireland's sons will ne'er forget the blood that they have shed.
  Then pull the shamrock from your hat and cast it on the sod,
  And never fear, 'twill take root there, though under foot 'tis trod.
  When law can stop the blades of grass from growin' as they grow,
  And when the leaves in summer-time their color dare not show,
  Then I will change the color, too, I wear in my caubeen;
  But till that day, please God, I'll stick to wearin' of the green.

  But if at last our color should be torn from Ireland's heart,
  Her sons with shame and sorrow from the dear old isle will part:
  I've heard a whisper of a land that lies beyond the sea,
  Where rich and poor stand equal in the light of freedom's day.
  O Erin, must we leave you, driven by a tyrant's hand?
  Must we ask a mother's blessin' from a strange and distant land?
  Where the cruel cross of England shall nevermore be seen,
  And where, please God, we'll live and die still wearin' of the green.

* * * * *


  It chanced to me upon a time to sail
    Across the Southern ocean to and fro;
  And, landing at fair isles, by stream and vale
    Of sensuous blessing did we ofttimes go.
  And months of dreamy joys, like joys in sleep,
    Or like a clear, calm stream o'er mossy stone,
  Unnoted passed our hearts with voiceless sweep,
    And left us yearning still for lands unknown.

  And when we found one,—for 'tis soon to find
    In thousand-isled Cathay another isle,—
  For one short noon its treasures filled the mind,
    And then again we yearned, and ceased to smile.
  And so it was from isle to isle we passed,
    Like wanton bees or boys on flowers or lips;
  And when that all was tasted, then at last
    We thirsted still for draughts instead of sips.

  I learned from this there is no Southern land
    Can fill with love the hearts of Northern men.
  Sick minds need change; but, when in health they stand
    'Neath foreign skies, their love flies home agen.
  And thus with me it was: the yearning turned
    From laden airs of cinnamon away,
  And stretched far westward, while the full heart burned
    With love for Ireland, looking on Cathay!

  My first dear love, all dearer for thy grief!
    My land, that has no peer in all the sea
  For verdure, vale, or river, flower or leaf,—
    If first to no man else, thou'rt first to me.
  New loves may come with duties, but the first
    Is deepest yet,—the mother's breath and smiles;
  Like that kind face and breast where I was nursed
    Is my poor land, the Niobe of isles.


* * * * *


  Bless the dear old verdant land!
    Brother, wert thou born of it?
  As thy shadow life doth stand
  Twining round its rosy band.
  Did an Irish mother's hand
    Guide thee in the morn of it?
  Did a father's first command
    Teach thee love or scorn of it?

  Thou who tread'st its fertile breast,
    Dost thou feel a glow for it?
  Thou of all its charms possest.
  Living on its first and best,
  Art thou but a thankless guest
    Or a traitor foe for it,
  If thou lovest, where's the test?
    Wilt thou strike a blow for it?

  Has the past no goading sting
    That can make thee rouse for it?
  Does thy land's reviving spring,
  Full of buds and blossoming,
  Fail to make thy cold heart cling,
    Breathing lover's vows for it?
  With the circling ocean's ring
    Thou wert made a spouse for it.

  Hast thou kept as thou shouldst keep
    Thy affections warm for it,
  Letting no cold feeling creep
  Like an ice-breath o'er the deep,
  Freezing to a stony sleep
    Hopes the heart would form for it,
  Glories that like rainbows peep
    Through the darkening storm for it?

  Son of this down-trodden land,
    Aid us in the fight for it.
  We seek to make it great and grand,
  Its shipless bays, its naked strand,
  By canvas-swelling breezes fanned:
    Oh, what a glorious sight for it,
  The past expiring like a brand
    In morning's rosy light for it!

  Think, this dear old land is thine,
    And thou a traitor slave of it:
  Think how the Switzer leads his kine,
  When pale the evening star doth shine;
  His song has home in every line,
    Freedom in every stave of it;
  Think how the German loves his Rhine
    And worships every wave of it!

  Our own dear land is bright as theirs,
    But oh! our hearts are cold for it;
  Awake! we are not slaves, but heirs.
  Our fatherland requires our cares,
  Our speech with men, with God our prayers;
    Spurn blood-stained Judas gold for it:
  Let us do all that honor dares—
    Be earnest, faithful, bold for it!


* * * * *



  They are dying! they are dying! where the golden corn is growing;
  They are dying! they are dying! where the crowded herds are lowing:
  They are gasping for existence where the streams of life are flowing,
  And they perish of the plague where the breeze of health is blowing!

  God of justice! God of power!
    Do we dream? Can it be,
  In this land, at this hour,
    With the blossom on the tree,
  In the gladsome month of May,
  When the young lambs play,
  When Nature looks around
    On her waking children now,
  The seed within the ground,
    The bud upon the bough?
  Is it right, is it fair,
  That we perish of despair
  In this land, on this soil,
    Where our destiny is set,
  Which we cultured with our toil,
    And watered with our sweat?
  We have ploughed, we have sown
  But the crop was not our own;
  We have reaped, but harpy hands
  Swept the harvest from our lands;
  We were perishing for food,
  When lo! in pitying mood,
  Our kindly rulers gave
  The fat fluid of the slave,
  While our corn filled the manger
  Of the war-horse of the stranger!

  God of mercy! must this last?
    Is this land preordained,
  For the present and the past
    And the future, to be chained,—
    To be ravaged, to be drained,
  To be robbed, to be spoiled,
    To be hushed, to be whipt,
    Its soaring pinions clipt,
  And its every effort foiled?

  Do our numbers multiply
  But to perish and to die?
    Is this all our destiny below,—
  That our bodies, as they rot,
  May fertilize the spot
    Where the harvests of the stranger grow?
    If this be, indeed, our fate,
    Far, far better now, though late,
  That we seek some other land and try some other zone;
    The coldest, bleakest shore
    Will surely yield us more
  Than the storehouse of the stranger that we dare not call our own.

    Kindly brothers of the West,
    Who from Liberty's full breast
  Have fed us, who are orphans beneath a step-dame's frown,
    Behold our happy state,
    And weep your wretched fate
  That you share not in the splendors of our empire and our crown!

    Kindly brothers of the East,—
    Thou great tiaraed priest,
  Thou sanctified Rienzi of Rome and of the earth,—
    Or thou who bear'st control
    Over golden Istambol,
  Who felt for our misfortunes and helped us in our dearth,—

    Turn here your wondering eyes,
    Call your wisest of the wise,
  Your muftis and your ministers, your men of deepest lore;
    Let the sagest of your sages
    Ope our island's mystic pages,
  And explain unto your highness the wonders of our shore.

    A fruitful, teeming soil,
    Where the patient peasants toil
  Beneath the summer's sun and the watery winter sky;
    Where they tend the golden grain
    Till it bends upon the plain,
  Then reap it for the stranger, and turn aside to die;

    Where they watch their flocks increase,
    And store the snowy fleece
  Till they send it to their masters to be woven o'er the waves;
    Where, having sent their meat
    For the foreigner to eat,
  Their mission is fulfilled, and they creep into their graves.

  'Tis for this they are dying where the golden corn is growing,
  'Tis for this they are dying where the crowded herds are lowing,
  'Tis for this they are dying where the streams of life are flowing,
  And they perish of the plague where the breeze of health is blowing!


* * * * *



  A great, still Shape, alone,
   She sits (her harp has fallen) on the sand,
  And sees her children, one by one, depart:—
  Her cloak (that hides what sins beside her own!)
   Wrapped fold on fold about her. Lo,
    She comforts her fierce heart,
  As wailing some, and some gay-singing go,
  With the far vision of that Greater Land
    Deep in the Atlantic skies,
    Saint Brandan's Paradise!
    Another Woman there,
   Mighty and wondrous fair,
  Stands on her shore-rock:—one uplifted hand
    Holds a quick-piercing light
    That keeps long sea-ways bright;
  She beckons with the other, saying "Come,
    O landless, shelterless,
  Sharp-faced with hunger, worn with long distress:—
    Come hither, finding home!
  Lo, my new fields of harvest, open, free,
    By winds of blessing blown,
  Whose golden corn-blades shake from sea to sea—
  Fields without walls that all the people own!"


* * * * *


  There came to the beach a poor exile of Erin,
   The dew on his thin robe was heavy and chill;
  For his country he sighed, when at twilight repairing
   To wander alone by the wind-beaten hill.
  But the day-star attracted his eye's sad devotion,
  For it rose o'er his own native isle of the ocean,
  Where once, in the fire of his youthful emotion,
   He sang the bold anthem of Erin go bragh.

  Sad is my fate! said the heart-broken stranger;
   The wild deer and wolf to a covert can flee,
  But I have no refuge from famine and danger,
   A home and a country remain not to me.
  Never again in the green sunny bowers
  Where my forefathers lived shall I spend the sweet hours,
  Or cover my harp with the wild-woven flowers,
   And strike to the numbers of Erin go bragh!

  Erin, my country! though sad and forsaken,
   In dreams I revisit thy sea-beaten shore;
  But, alas! in a far foreign land I awaken,
   And sigh for the friends who can meet me no more!
  O cruel fate! wilt thou never replace me
  In a mansion of peace, where no perils can chase me?
  Never again shall my brothers embrace me?
   They died to defend me, or live to deplore!

  Where is my cabin door, fast by the wildwood?
   Sisters and sire, did ye weep for its fall?
  Where is the mother that looked on my childhood?
   And where is the bosom-friend, dearer than all?
  O my sad heart! long abandoned by pleasure,
  Why did it dote on a fast-fading treasure?
  Tears, like the rain-drop, may fall without measure,
   But rapture and beauty they cannot recall.

  Yet, all its sad recollections suppressing,
   One dying wish my lone bosom can draw,—
  Erin, an exile bequeaths thee his blessing!
   Land of my forefathers, Erin go bragh!
  Buried and cold, when my heart stills her motion,
  Green be thy fields, sweetest isle of the ocean!
  And thy harp-striking bards sing aloud with devotion,—
   Erin mavourneen, Erin go bragh![A]

[Footnote A: Ireland my darling, Ireland forever!]


* * * * *


  Shall mine eyes behold thy glory, O my country?
   Shall mine eyes behold thy glory?
  Or shall the darkness close around them, ere the
   sun-blaze breaks at last upon thy story?
  When the nations ope for thee their queenly circle,
   as a sweet new sister hail thee,

  Shall these lips be sealed in callous death and
    silence, that have known but to bewail thee?
  Shall the ear be deaf that only loved thy praises,
    when all men their tribute bring thee?
  Shall the mouth be clay that sang thee in thy
    squalor, when all poets' mouths shall sing thee?

  Ah, the harpings and the salvos and the shoutings
    of thy exiled sons returning!
  I should hear, though dead and mouldered, and
    the grave-damps should not chill my bosom's burning.

  Ah, the tramp of feet victorious! I should hear
    them 'mid the shamrocks and the mosses,
  And my heart should toss within the shroud and
    quiver as a captive dreamer tosses.

  I should turn and rend the cere-clothes round me,
    giant sinews I should borrow—
  Crying, "O my brothers, I have also loved her in
    her loneliness and sorrow.

  "Let me join with you the jubilant procession;
    let me chant with you her story;
  Then contented I shall go back to the shamrocks,
    now mine eyes have seen her glory!"


* * * * *



  Lo Venice, gay with color, lights and song,
    Calls from St. Mark's with ancient voice and strange:
  I am the Witch of Cities! glide along
    My silver streets that never wear by change
  Of years: forget the years, and pain, and wrong,
  And ever sorrow reigning men among.
    Know I can soothe thee, please and marry thee
  To my illusions. Old and siren strong,
    I smile immortal, while the mortals flee
    Who whiten on to death in wooing me.


  Say, what more fair by Arno's bridgèd gleam
    Than Florence, viewed from San Miniato's slope
  At eventide, when west along the stream
    The last of day reflects a silver hope!—
  Lo, all else softened in the twilight beam:—
  The city's mass blent in one hazy cream,
    The brown Dome 'midst it, and the Lily tower,
  And stern Old Tower more near, and hills that seem
    Afar, like clouds to fade, and hills of power
    On this side greenly dark with cypress, vine and bower.


  End of desire to stray I feel would come
    Though Italy were all fair skies to me,
  Though France's fields went mad with flowery foam
    And Blanc put on a special majesty,
  Not all could match the growing thought of home
  Nor tempt to exile. Look I not on Rome—
    This ancient, modern, mediæval queen—
  Yet still sigh westward over hill and dome,
    Imperial ruin and villa's princely scene
    Lovely with pictured saints and marble gods serene.


  Rome, Florence, Venice—noble, fair and quaint,
    They reign in robes of magic round me here;
  But fading, blotted, dim, a picture faint,
    With spell more silent, only pleads a tear.
  Plead not! Thou hast my heart, O picture dim!
    I see the fields, I see the autumn hand
  Of God upon the maples! Answer Him
    With weird, translucent glories, ye that stand
  Like spirits in scarlet and in amethyst!
  I see the sun break over you: the mist
    On hills that lift from iron bases grand
    Their heads superb!—the dream, it is my native land.


* * * * *


  O child of Nations, giant-limbed,
    Who stand'st among the nations now,
  Unheeded, unadored, unhymned,
    With unanointed brow:

  How long the ignoble sloth, how long
    The trust in greatness not thine own?
  Surely the lion's brood is strong
    To front the world alone!

  How long the indolence, ere thou dare
    Achieve thy destiny, seize thy fame;
  Ere our proud eyes behold thee bear
    A nation's franchise, nation's name?

  The Saxon force, the Celtic fire,
    These are thy manhood's heritage!
  Why rest with babes and slaves? Seek higher
    The place of race and age.

  I see to every wind unfurled
    The flag that bears the Maple-Wreath;
  Thy swift keels furrow round the world
    Its blood-red folds beneath;

  Thy swift keels cleave the furthest seas;
    Thy white sails swell with alien gales;
  To stream on each remotest breeze
    The black smoke of thy pipes exhales.

  O Falterer, let thy past convince
    Thy future: all the growth, the gain,
  The fame since Cartier knew thee, since
    Thy shores beheld Champlain!

  Montcalm and Wolfe! Wolfe and Montcalm!
    Quebec, thy storied citadel
  Attest in burning song and psalm
    How here thy heroes fell!

  O Thou that bor'st the battle's brunt
    At Queenstown, and at Lundy's Lane:
  On whose scant ranks but iron front
    The battle broke in vain!

  Whose was the danger, whose the day,
    From whose triumphant throats the cheers,
  At Chrysler's Farm, at Chateauguay,
    Storming like clarion-bursts our ears?

  On soft Pacific slopes,—beside
    Strange floods that northward rave and fall,
  Where chafes Acadia's chainless tide,—
    Thy sons await thy call.

  They wait; but some in exile, some
    With strangers housed, in stranger lands;
  And some Canadian lips are dumb
    Beneath Egyptian sands.

  O mystic Nile! Thy secret yields
    Before us; thy most ancient dreams
  Are mixed with far Canadian fields
    And murmur of Canadian streams.

  But thou, my Country, dream not thou!
    Wake, and behold how night is done,—
  How on thy breast, and o'er thy brow,
    Bursts the uprising sun!


* * * * *


  What is the German's fatherland?
  Is it Prussia, or the Swabian's land?
  Is it where the grape glows on the Rhine?
  Where sea-gulls skim the Baltic's brine?
      Oh no! more grand
    Must be the German's fatherland!

  What is the German's fatherland?
  Bavaria, or the Styrian's land?
  Is it where the Master's cattle graze?
  Is it the Mark where forges blaze?
      Oh no! more grand
    Must be the German's fatherland!

  What is the German's fatherland?
  Westphalia? Pomerania's strand?
  Where the sand drifts along the shore?
  Or where the Danube's surges roar?
      Oh no! more grand
    Must be the German's fatherland!

  What is the German's fatherland?
  Now name for me that mighty land!
  Is it Switzerland? or Tyrols, tell;—
  The land and people pleased me well!
      Oh no! more grand
    Must be the German's fatherland!

  What is the German's fatherland?
  Now name for me that mighty land!
  Ah! Austria surely it must be,
  So rich in fame and victory.
      Oh no! more grand
    Must be the German's fatherland!

  What is the German's fatherland?
  Tell me the name of that great land!
  Is it the land which princely hate
  Tore from the Emperor and the State?
      Oh no! more grand
    Must be the German's fatherland!

  What is the German's fatherland?
  Now name at last that mighty land!
  "Where'er resounds the German tongue,
  Where'er its hymns to God are sung!"
      That is the land,
    Brave German, that thy fatherland!

  That is the German's fatherland!
  Where binds like oak the claspèd hand,
  Where truth shines clearly from the eyes,
  And in the heart affection lies.
      Be this the land,
    Brave German, this thy fatherland!

  That is the German's fatherland!
  Where scorn shall foreign trifles brand,
  Where all are foes whose deeds offend,
  Where every noble soul's a friend:
      Be this the land,
    All Germany shall be the land!

  All Germany that land shall be:
  Watch o'er it, God, and grant that we,
  With German hearts, in deed and thought,
  May love it truly as we ought.
      Be this the land,
    All Germany shall be the land!

From the German of ERNST MORITZ ARNDT.

* * * * *


  God, who gave iron, purposed ne'er
    That man should be a slave:
  Therefore the sabre, sword, and spear
    In his right hand He gave.
  Therefore He gave him fiery mood,
    Fierce speech, and free-born breath,
  That he might fearlessly the feud
    Maintain through life and death.

  Therefore will we what God did say,
    With honest truth maintain,
  And ne'er a fellow-creature slay,
    A tyrant's pay to gain!
  But he shall fall by stroke of brand
    Who fights for sin and shame,
  And not inherit German land
    With men of German name.

  O Germany, bright fatherland!
    O German love, so true!
  Thou sacred land, thou beauteous land,
    We swear to thee anew!
  Outlawed, each knave and coward shall
    The crow and raven feed;
  But we will to the battle all—
    Revenge shall be our meed.

  Flash forth, flash forth, whatever can,
    To bright and flaming life!
  Now all ye Germans, man for man,
    Forth to the holy strife!
  Your hands lift upward to the sky—
    Your heart shall upward soar—
  And man for man, let each one cry,
    Our slavery is o'er!

  Let sound, let sound, whatever can,
    Trumpet and fife and drum,
  This day our sabres, man for man,
    To stain with blood we come;
  With hangman's and with Frenchmen's blood,
    O glorious day of ire,
  That to all Germans soundeth good—
    Day of our great desire!

  Let wave, let wave, whatever can,
    Standard and banner wave!
  Here will we purpose, man for man,
    To grace a hero's grave.
  Advance, ye brave ranks, hardily—
    Your banners wave on high;
  We'll gain us freedom's victory,
    Or freedom's death we'll die!

From the German of ERNST MORITZ ARNDT.

* * * * *


  The storm is out; the land is roused;
  Where is the coward who sits well housed?
  Fie on thee, boy, disguised in curls,
  Behind the stove, 'mong gluttons and girls!
    A graceless, worthless wight thou must be;
    No German maid desires thee,
    No German song inspires thee,
    No German Rhine-wine fires thee.
      Forth in the van,
      Man by man,
    Swing the battle-sword who can!

  When we stand watching, the livelong night,
  Through piping storms, till morning light,
  Thou to thy downy bed canst creep,
  And there in dreams of rapture sleep.
    A graceless, worthless wight, etc.

  When, hoarse and shrill, the trumpet's blast.
  Like the thunder of God, makes our heart beat fast,
  Thou in the theatre lov'st to appear,
  Where trills and quavers tickle the ear.
    A graceless, worthless wight, etc.

  When the glare of noonday scorches the brain,
  When our parched lips seek water in vain,
  Thou canst make champagne corks fly
  At the groaning tables of luxury.
    A graceless, worthless wight, etc.

  When we, as we rush to the strangling fight,
  Send home to our true-loves a long "Good-night,"
  Thou canst hie thee where love is sold,
  And buy thy pleasure with paltry gold.
    A graceless, worthless wight, etc.

  When lance and bullet come whistling by,
  And death in a thousand shapes draws nigh,
  Thou canst sit at thy cards, and kill
  King, queen, and knave with thy spadille.
    A graceless, worthless wight, etc.

  If on the red field our bell should toll,
  Then welcome be death to the patriot's soul!
  Thy pampered flesh shall quake at its doom,
  And crawl in silk to a hopeless tomb.
    A pitiful exit thine shall be;
    No German maid shall weep for thee,
    No German song shall they sing for thee,
    No German goblets shall ring for thee.
      Forth in the van,
      Man for man,
    Swing the battle-sword who can!

From the German of KARL THEODOR KÖRNER.

* * * * *


[Footnote A: Written by a manufacturer of Wurtemburg in 1840, when France was threatening the left bank of the Rhine. It was set to music by Carl Wilhelm, and during the Franco-Prussian war of 1871 was adopted as the national folk-hymn and rallying cry of the army.]

  A voice resounds like thunder-peal,
  'Mid dashing waves and clang of steel:—
  "The Rhine, the Rhine, the German Rhine!
  Who guards to-day my stream divine?"


  Dear Fatherland, no danger thine:
  Firm stand thy sons to watch the Rhine_!

  They stand, a hundred thousand strong,
  Quick to avenge their country's wrong;
  With filial love their bosoms swell,
  They'll guard the sacred landmark well!

  The dead of a heroic race
  From heaven look down and meet their gaze;
  They swear with dauntless heart, "O Rhine,
  Be German as this breast of mine!"

  While flows one drop of German blood,
  Or sword remains to guard thy flood,
  While rifle rests in patriot hand,—
  No foe shall tread thy sacred strand!

  Our oath resounds, the river flows,
  In golden light our banner glows;
  Our hearts will guard thy stream divine:
  The Rhine, the Rhine, the German Rhine!

    Dear Fatherland, no danger thine:
    Firm stand thy sons to watch the Rhine


* * * * *



[Footnote A: Aside from its national significance "The Kalevala" is interesting from the fact of its having been taken as the model in rhythm and style for Longfellow's "Hiawatha," the epic of the American Indian.]

  Mastered by desire impulsive,
  By a mighty inward urging,
  I am ready now for singing,
  Ready to begin the chanting
  Of our nation's ancient folk-song,
  Handed down from bygone ages.
  In my mouth the words are melting,
  From my lips the tones are gliding,
  From my tongue they wish to hasten;
  When my willing teeth are parted,
  When my ready mouth is opened,
  Songs of ancient wit and wisdom
  Hasten from me not unwilling.
    Golden friend, and dearest brother,
  Brother dear of mine in childhood,
  Come and sing with me the stories,
  Come and chant with me the legends,
  Legends of the times forgotten,
  Since we now are here together,
  Come together from our roamings.
  Seldom do we come for singing,
  Seldom to the one, the other,
  O'er this cold and cruel country,
  O'er the poor soil of the Northland.
  Let us clasp our hands together,
  That we thus may best remember.
  Join we now in merry singing,
  Chant we now the oldest folk-lore,
  That the dear ones all may hear them,
  That the well-inclined may hear them,
  Of this rising generation.
  These are words in childhood taught me,
  Songs preserved from distant ages;
  Legends they that once were taken
  From the belt of Wainamoinen,
  From the forge of Ilmarinen,
  From the sword of Kaukomieli,
  From the bow of Youkahainen,
  From the pastures of the Northland,
  From the meads of Kalevala.
  These my dear old father sang me
  When at work with knife and hatchet:
  These my tender mother taught me
  When she twirled the flying spindle,
  When a child upon the matting
  By her feet I rolled and tumbled.
    Incantations were not wanting
  Over Sampo and o'er Louhi,
  Sampo growing old in singing,
  Louhi ceasing her enchantment.
  In the songs died wise Wipunen,
  At the games died Lemminkainen.
  There are many other legends,
  Incantations that were taught me,
  That I found along the wayside,
  Gathered in the fragrant copses,
  Blown me from the forest branches,
  Culled among the plumes of pine-trees,
  Scented from the vines and flowers,
  Whispered to me as I followed
  Flocks in land of honeyed meadows,
  Over hillocks green and golden,
  After sable-haired Murikki,
  And the many-colored Kimmo.
  Many runes the cold has told me,
  Many lays the rain has brought me,
  Other songs the winds have sung me;
  Many birds from many forests,
  Oft have sung me lays in concord;
  Waves of sea, and ocean billows,
  Music from the many waters,
  Music from the whole creation,
  Oft have been my guide and master.
  Sentences the trees created,
  Rolled together into bundles,
  Moved them to my ancient dwelling,
  On the sledges to my cottage,
  Tied them to my garret rafters,
  Hung them on my dwelling-portals,
  Laid them in a chest of boxes,
  Boxes lined with shining copper.
  Long they lay within my dwelling
  Through the chilling winds of winter,
  In my dwelling-place for ages.
    Shall I bring these songs together?
  From the cold and frost collect them?
  Shall I bring this nest of boxes,
  Keepers of these golden legends,
  To the table in my cabin,
  Underneath the painted rafters,
  In this house renowned and ancient?
  Shall I now these boxes open,
  Boxes filled with wondrous stories?
  Shall I now the end unfasten
  Of this ball of ancient wisdom?
  These ancestral lays unravel?
  Let me sing an old-time legend,
  That shall echo forth the praises
  Of the beer that I have tasted,
  Of the sparkling beer of barley,
  Bring to me a foaming goblet
  Of the barley of my fathers,
  Lest my singing grow too weary,
  Singing from the water only.
  Bring me too a cup of strong beer;
  It will add to our enchantment,
  To the pleasure of the evening,
  Northland's long and dreary evening,
  For the beauty of the day-dawn,
  For the pleasures of the morning,
  The beginning of the new day.

From the FINNISH.

* * * * *



  I love thee, love thee, Giulio!
    Some call me cold, and some demure,
  And if thou hast ever guessed that so
    I love thee … well;—the proof was poor,
    And no one could be sure.

  Before thy song (with shifted rhymes
     To suit my name) did I undo
  The persian? If it moved sometimes,
    Thou hast not seen a hand push through
    A flower or two.

  My mother listening to my sleep
    Heard nothing but a sigh at night,—
  The short sigh rippling on the deep,—
    When hearts run out of breath and sigh
    Of men, to God's clear light.

  When others named thee,… thought thy brows
    Were straight, thy smile was tender,… "Here
  He comes between the vineyard-rows!"—
    I said not "Ay,"—nor waited, Dear,
    To feel thee step too near.

  I left such things to bolder girls,
    Olivia or Clotilda. Nay,
  When that Clotilda through her curls
    Held both thine eyes in hers one day,
    I marvelled, let me say.

  I could not try the woman's trick:
    Between us straightway fell the blush
  Which kept me separate, blind, and sick.
    A wind came with thee in a flush,
    As blow through Horeb's bush.

  But now that Italy invokes
    Her young men to go forth and chase
  The foe or perish,—nothing chokes
    My voice, or drives me from the place:
    I look thee in the face.

  I love thee! it is understood,
    Confest: I do not shrink or start:
  No blushes: all my body's blood
    Has gone to greaten this poor heart,
    That, loving, we may part.

  Our Italy invokes the youth
    To die if need be. Still there's room,
  Though earth is strained with dead, in truth.
    Since twice the lilies were in bloom
    They had not grudged a tomb.

  And many a plighted maid and wife
    And mother, who can say since then
  "My country," cannot say through life
    "My son," "my spouse," "my flower of men,"
    And not weep dumb again.

  Heroic males the country bears,
    But daughters give up more than sons.
  Flags wave, drums beat, and unawares
    You flash your souls out with the guns,
    And take your heaven at once!

  But we,—we empty heart and home
     Of life's life, love! we bear to think
  You're gone,… to feel you may not come,…
     To hear the door-latch stir and clink
     Yet no more you,… nor sink.

  Dear God! when Italy is one
     And perfected from bound to bound,…
  Suppose (for my share) earth's undone
     By one grave in't! as one small wound
     May kill a man, 'tis found!

  What then? If love's delight must end,
     At least we'll clear its truth from flaws.
  I love thee, love thee, sweetest friend!
     Now take my sweetest without pause,
     To help the nation's cause.

  And thus of noble Italy
     We'll both be worthy. Let her show
  The future how we made her free,
     Not sparing life, nor Giulio,
     Nor this … this heart-break. Go!


* * * * *


  O mother of a mighty race,
  Yet lovely in thy youthful grace!
  The elder dames, thy haughty peers,
  Admire and hate thy blooming years;
      With words of shame
  And taunts of scorn they join thy name.

  For on thy cheeks the glow is spread
  That tints thy morning hills with red;
  Thy step,—the wild deer's rustling feet
  Within thy woods are not more fleet;
      Thy hopeful eye
  Is bright as thine own sunny sky.

  Ay, let them rail, those haughty ones,
  While safe thou dwellest with thy sons.
  They do not know how loved thou art,
  How many a fond and fearless heart
      Would rise to throw
  Its life between thee and the foe.

  They know not, in their hate and pride,
  What virtues with thy children bide,—
  How true, how good, thy graceful maids
  Make bright, like flowers, the valley shades;
      What generous men
  Spring, like thine oaks, by hill and glen;

  What cordial welcomes greet the guest
  By thy lone rivers of the west;
  How faith is kept, and truth revered,
  And man is loved, and God is feared,
      In woodland homes,
  And where the ocean border foams.

  There's freedom at thy gates, and rest
  For earth's down-trodden and opprest,
  A shelter for the hunted head,
  For the starved laborer toil and bread.
      Power, at thy bounds,
  Stops, and calls back his baffled hounds.

  O fair young mother! on thy brow
  Shall sit a nobler grace than now.
  Deep in the brightness of thy skies,
  The thronging years in glory rise,
      And, as they fleet,
  Drop strength and riches at thy feet.

  Thine eye, with every coming hour,
  Shall brighten, and thy form shall tower;
  And when thy sisters, elder born,
  Would brand thy name with words of scorn,
      Before thine eye
  Upon their lips the taunt shall die.


* * * * *


  Columbia, Columbia, to glory arise,
  The queen of the world, and the child of the skies!
  Thy genius commands thee; with rapture behold,
  While ages on ages thy splendors unfold.
  Thy reign is the last and the noblest of time,
  Most fruitful thy soil, most inviting thy clime;
  Let the crimes of the East ne'er encrimson thy name,
  Be freedom and science and virtue thy fame.

  To conquest and slaughter let Europe aspire;
  Whelm nations in blood, and wrap cities in fire;
  Thy heroes the rights of mankind shall defend,
  And triumph pursue them, and glory attend.
  A world is thy realm; for a world be thy laws
  Enlarged as thine empire, and just as thy cause;
  On Freedom's broad basis that empire shall rise,
  Extend with the main, and dissolve with the skies.

  Fair Science her gates to thy sons shall unbar,
  And the East see thy morn hide the beams of her star;
  New bards and new sages unrivalled shall soar
  To fame unextinguished when time is no more;
  To thee, the last refuge of virtue designed,
  Shall fly from all nations the best of mankind;
  Here, grateful to Heaven, with transport shall bring
  Their incense, more fragrant than odors of spring.

  Nor less shall thy fair ones to glory ascend,
  And genius and beauty in harmony blend;
  The graces of form shall awake pure desire,
  And the charms of the soul ever cherish the fire;
  Their sweetness unmingled, their manners refined,
  And virtue's bright image, enstamped on the mind,
  With peace and soft rapture shall teach life to glow,
  And light up a smile on the aspect of woe.

  Thy fleets to all regions thy power shall display,
  The nations admire, and the ocean obey;
  Each shore to thy glory its tribute unfold,
  And the East and the South yield their spices and gold.
  As the dayspring unbounded thy splendor shall flow,
  And earth's little kingdoms before thee shall bow,
  While the ensigns of union, in triumph unfurled,
  Hush the tumult of war, and give peace to the world.

  Thus, as down a lone valley, with cedars o'er-spread,
  From war's dread confusion, I pensively strayed,—
  The gloom from the face of fair heaven retired;
  The wind ceased to murmur, the thunders expired;
  Perfumes, as of Eden, flowed sweetly along,
  And a voice, as of angels, enchantingly sung:
  "Columbia, Columbia, to glory arise,
  The queen of the world, and the child of the skies!"


* * * * *


  The Muse, disgusted at an age and clime
    Barren of every glorious theme,
  In distant lands now waits a better time,
    Producing subjects worthy fame.

  In happy climes, where from the genial sun
    And virgin earth such scenes ensue,
  The force of art by nature seems outdone,
    And fancied beauties by the true:

  In happy climes, the seat of innocence,
    Where nature guides and virtue rules,
  Where men shall not impose for truth and sense
    The pedantry of courts and schools:

  There shall be sung another golden age,
    The rise of empire and of arts,
  The good and great inspiring epic rage,
    The wisest heads and noblest hearts.

  Not such as Europe breeds in her decay:
    Such as she bred when fresh and young,
  When heavenly flame did animate her clay,
    By future poets shall be sung.

  Westward the course of empire takes its way;
    The first four acts already past,
  A fifth shall close the drama with the day;
    Time's noblest offspring is the last.


* * * * *


  Nor force nor fraud shall sunder us! O ye
    Who north or south, or east or western land,
    Native to noble sounds, say truth for truth,
  Freedom for freedom, love for love, and God
    For God; O ye who in eternal youth
    Speak with a living and creative flood
    This universal English, and do stand
    Its breathing book; live worthy of that grand
    Heroic utterance—parted, yet a whole,
      Far, yet unsevered,—children brave and free
      Of the great Mother tongue, and ye shall be
    Lords of an empire wide as Shakespeare's soul,
        Sublime as Milton's immemorial theme,
  And rich as Chaucer's speech, and fair as Spenser's dream.


* * * * *


  The south-land boasts its teeming cane,
  The prairied west its heavy grain,
  And sunset's radiant gates unfold
  On rising marts and sands of gold!

  Rough, bleak, and hard, our little State
  Is scant of soil, of limits strait;
  Her yellow sands are sands alone,
  Her only mines are ice and stone!

  From autumn frost to April rain,
  Too long her winter woods complain;
  From budding flower to falling leaf,
  Her summer time is all too brief.

  Yet, on her rocks, and on her sands,
  And wintry hills, the school-house stands;
  And what her rugged soil denies
  The harvest of the mind supplies.

  The riches of the commonwealth
  Are free, strong minds, and hearts of health;
  And more to her than gold or grain
  The cunning hand and cultured brain.

  For well she keeps her ancient stock,
  The stubborn strength of Pilgrim Rock;
  And still maintains, with milder laws,
  And clearer light, the good old cause!

  Nor heeds the sceptic's puny hands,
  While near her school the church-spire stands;
  Nor fears the blinded bigot's rule,
  While near her church-spire stands the school.


* * * * *



  Thou, too, sail on, O Ship of State!
  Sail on, O UNION, strong and great!
  Humanity with all its fears,
  With all the hopes of future years,
  Is hanging breathless on thy fate!
  We know what Master laid thy keel,
  What Workmen wrought thy ribs of steel,
  Who made each mast, and sail, and rope,
  What anvils rang, what hammers beat,
  In what a forge and what a heat
  Were shaped the anchors of thy hope!
  Fear not each sudden sound and shock,
  'Tis of the wave and not the rock;
  'Tis but the flapping of the sail,
  And not a rent made by the gale!
  In spite of rock and tempest's roar,
  In spite of false lights on the shore,
  Sail on, nor fear to breast the sea!
  Our hearts, our hopes, are all with thee,
  Our hearts, our hopes, our prayers, our tears,
  Our faith triumphant o'er our fears,
  Are all with thee,—are all with thee!


* * * * *



  My country, 'tis of thee,
  Sweet land of liberty,
      Of thee I sing;
  Land where my fathers died,
  Land of the pilgrims' pride,
  From every mountain-side
     Let freedom ring.

  My native country, thee,
  Land of the noble free,—
     Thy name I love;
  I love thy rocks and rills,
  Thy woods and templed hills;
  My heart with rapture thrills
       Like that above.

  Let music swell the breeze,
  And ring from all the trees,
     Sweet freedom's song;
  Let mortal tongues awake,
  Let all that breathe partake,
  Let rocks their silence break,—
      The sound prolong.

  Our fathers' God, to Thee,
  Author of liberty,
     To Thee I sing;
  Long may our land be bright
  With freedom's holy light;
  Protect us by thy might,
      Great God our King.

Samuel Francis Smith.

* * * * *


[On the proposed breaking up of the United States frigate

  Ay, tear her tattered ensign down!
   Long has it waved on high,
  And many an eye has danced to see
    That banner in the sky;
  Beneath it rung the battle-shout,
   And burst the cannon's roar:
  The meteor of the ocean air
    Shall sweep the clouds no more!

  Her deck, once red with heroes' blood,
    Where knelt the vanquished foe,
  When winds were hurrying o'er the flood
    And waves were white below,
  No more shall feel the victor's tread,
   Or know the conquered knee:
  The harpies of the shore shall pluck
    The eagle of the sea!

  O better that her shattered hulk
    Should sink beneath the wave!
  Her thunders shook the mighty deep,
    And there should be her grave:
  Nail to the mast her holy flag,
    Set every threadbare sail,
  And give her to the god of storms,
    The lightning and the gale!


* * * * *


[APRIL, 1861.]

  Men of the North and West,
      Wake in your might.
  Prepare, as the rebels have done,
      For the fight!
  You cannot shrink from the test;
  Rise! Men of the North and West!

  They have torn down your banner of stars;
      They have trampled the laws;
  They have stifled the freedom they hate,
      For no cause!
  Do you love it or slavery best?
  Speak! Men of the North and West!

  They strike at the life of the State:
      Shall the murder be done?
  They cry: "We are two!" And you?
      "We are one!"
  You must meet them, then, breast to breast;
  On! Men of the North and West!

  Not with words; they laugh them to scorn,
      And tears they despise;
  But with swords in your hands, and death
      In your eyes!
  Strike home! leave to God all the rest;
  Strike! Men of the North and West!


* * * * *



  Lay down the axe, fling by the spade;
    Leave in its track the toiling plough;
  The rifle and the bayonet-blade
    For arms like yours were fitter now;
  And let the hands that ply the pen
    Quit the light task, and learn to wield
  The horseman's crookèd brand, and rein
    The charger on the battle-field.

  Our country calls; away! away!
    To where the blood-stream blots the green;
  Strike to defend the gentlest sway
    That Time in all his course has seen.
  See, from a thousand coverts—see
    Spring the armed foes that haunt her track;
  They rush to smite her down, and we
    Must beat the banded traitors back.

  Ho! sturdy as the oaks ye cleave,
    And moved as soon to fear and flight,
  Men of the glade and forest! leave
    Your woodcraft for the field of fight.
  The arms that wield the axe must pour
    An iron tempest on the foe;
  His serried ranks shall reel before
    The arm that lays the panther low.

  And ye who breast the mountain storm
    By grassy steep or highland lake,
  Come, for the land ye love, to form
    A bulwark that no foe can break.
  Stand, like your own gray cliffs that mock
    The whirlwind; stand in her defence:
  The blast as soon shall move the rock,
    As rushing squadrons bear ye thence.

  And ye whose homes are by her grand
    Swift rivers, rising far away,
  Come from the depth of her green land
    As mighty in your march as they;
  As terrible as when the rains
    Have swelled them over bank and bourne,
  With sudden floods to drown the plains
    And sweep along the woods uptorn.

  And ye who throng beside the deep,
    Her ports and hamlets of the strand,
  In number like the waves that leap
    On his long-murmuring marge of sand,
  Come, like that deep, when, o'er his brim,
    He rises, all his floods to pour,
  And flings the proudest barks that swim,
    A helpless wreck against his shore.

  Few, few were they whose swords of old
    Won the fair land in which we dwell;
  But we are many, we who hold
    The grim resolve to guard it well.
  Strike for that broad and goodly land,
    Blow after blow, till men shall see
  That Might and Right move hand in hand,
    And Glorious must their triumph be.


* * * * *



  Ho, woodsmen of the mountain-side!
    Ho, dwellers in the vales!
  Ho, ye who by the chafing tide
    Have roughened in the gales!
  Leave barn and byre, leave kin and cot,
    Lay by the bloodless spade;
  Let desk and case and counter rot,
    And burn your books of trade!

  The despot roves your fairest lands;
    And till he flies or fears,
  Your fields must grow but armèd bands,
    Your sheaves be sheaves of spears!
  Give up to mildew and to rust
    The useless tools of gain,
  And feed your country's sacred dust
    With floods of crimson rain!

  Come with the weapons at your call—
    With musket, pike, or knife;
  He wields the deadliest blade of all
    Who lightest holds his life.
  The arm that drives its unbought blows
    With all a patriot's scorn,
  Might brain a tyrant with a rose
    Or stab him with a thorn.

  Does any falter? Let him turn
    To some brave maiden's eyes,
  And catch the holy fires that burn
    In those sublunar skies.
  Oh, could you like your women feel,
    And in their spirit march,
  A day might see your lines of steel
    Beneath the victor's arch!

  What hope, O God! would not grow warm
    When thoughts like these give cheer?
  The lily calmly braves the storm,
    And shall the palm-tree fear?
  No! rather let its branches court
    The rack that sweeps the plain;
  And from the lily's regal port
    Learn how to breast the strain.

  Ho, woodsmen of the mountain-side!
    Ho, dwellers in the vales!
  Ho, ye who by the roaring tide
    Have roughened in the gales!
  Come, flocking gayly to the fight,
    From forest, hill, and lake;
  We battle for our country's right,
    And for the lily's sake!


* * * * *




  Before Thy Throne we bow:
  O God, our shield be Thou
    From Treason's rage!
  In faith we look to Thee,
  Our strength in Heav'n we see,
  Defender of the free,
  In ev'ry age.


  Our follies we confess:
  O God, forgive and bless!
    Let Mercy's light
  Illumine this dark hour,
  When war clouds o'er us lower,
  And Thine eternal power
    Defend the right!


  Our Pilgrim fathers sleep,
  The ocean, broad and deep,
    Beside their graves.
  When Thine archangel cries,
  Forbid that they should rise
  To crowns in Paradise
    From soil of slaves!


  Protect our armies, Lord,
  And when they draw the sword
    In freedom's name,
  Strike Thou for them the blow,
  Overwhelm the vaunting foe,
  And bury Treason low,
    In deathless shame!


  Let Liberty arise,
  Her glory fill the skies,
    The world be free!
  Let all adore Thy name,
  And children lisp Thy fame—
  Let earth and heav'n proclaim
    The jubilee!


* * * * *



  The despot's heel is on thy shore, Maryland!
  His torch is at thy temple door, Maryland!
  Avenge the patriotic gore
  That flecked the streets of Baltimore,
  And be the battle queen of yore,
    Maryland, My Maryland!

  Hark to thy wandering son's appeal, Maryland!
  My mother State, to thee I kneel, Maryland!
  For life and death, for woe and weal,
  Thy peerless chivalry reveal,
  And gird thy beauteous limbs with steel,
    Maryland, My Maryland!

  Thou wilt not cower in the dust, Maryland!
  Thy beaming sword shall never rust, Maryland!
  Remember Carroll's sacred trust,
  Remember Howard's warlike thrust,
  And all thy slumberers with the just,
    Maryland, My Maryland!

  Come, 'tis the red dawn of the day, Maryland!
  Come with thy panoplied array, Maryland!
  With Ringgold's spirit for the fray,
  With Watson's blood at Monterey,
  With fearless Lowe and dashing May,
    Maryland, My Maryland!

  Dear mother, burst the tyrant's chain, Maryland!
  Virginia should not call in vain, Maryland!
  She meets her sisters on the plain:
  "Sic semper!" 'tis the proud refrain
  That baffles minions back amain,
      Maryland, My Maryland!

  Come, for thy shield is bright and strong, Maryland!
  Come, for thy dalliance does thee wrong, Maryland!
  Come to thine own heroic throng,
  That stalks with liberty along,
  And give a new key to thy song,
    Maryland, My Maryland!

  I see the blush upon thy cheek, Maryland!
  But thou wast ever bravely meek, Maryland!
  But lo! there surges forth a shriek
  From hill to hill, from creek to creek;
  Potomac calls to Chesapeake,
    Maryland, My Maryland!

  Thou wilt not yield the Vandal toll, Maryland!
  Thou wilt not crook to his control, Maryland!
  Better the fire upon thee roll,
  Better the shot, the blade, the bowl,
  Than crucifixion of the soul,
    Maryland, My Maryland!

  I hear the distant thunder hum, Maryland!
  The Old Line's bugle, fife, and drum, Maryland!
  She is not dead, nor deaf, nor dumb—
  Huzza! she spurns the Northern scum;
  She breathes, she burns—she'll come! she'll come!
    Maryland, My Maryland!


* * * * *



  Southrons, hear your country call you!
  Up, lest worse than death befall you!
  To arms! To arms! To arms, in Dixie!
  Lo! all the beacon-fires are lighted,—
  Let all hearts be now united!
    To arms! To arms! To arms, in Dixie!
      Advance the flag of Dixie!
        Hurrah! hurrah!
  For Dixie's land we take our stand,
    And live or die for Dixie!
      To arms! To arms!
    And conquer peace for Dixie!
      To arms! To arms!
    And conquer peace for Dixie!

  Hear the Northern thunders mutter!
  Northern flags in South winds flutter!
  Send them back your fierce defiance!
  Stamp upon the accursed alliance!

  Fear no danger! Shun no labor!
  Lift up rifle, pike, and sabre!
  Shoulder pressing close to shoulder,
  Let the odds make each heart bolder!

  How the South's great heart rejoices
  At your cannons' ringing voices!
  For faith betrayed, and pledges broken,
  Wrongs inflicted, insults spoken.

  Strong as lions, swift as eagles,
  Back to their kennels hunt these beagles!
  Cut the unequal bonds asunder!
  Let them hence each other plunder!

  Swear upon your country's altar
  Never to submit or falter,
  Till the spoilers are defeated,
  Till the Lord's work is completed.

  Halt not till our Federation
  Secures among earth's powers its station!
  Then at peace, and crowned with glory,
  Hear your children tell the story!

  If the loved ones weep in sadness,
  Victory soon shall bring them gladness,—
          To arms!
  Exultant pride soon banish sorrow,
  Smiles chase tears away to-morrow.
    To arms! To arms! To arms, in Dixie!
      Advance the flag of Dixie!
         Hurrah! hurrah!
  For Dixie's land we take our stand,
  And live or die for Dixie!
    To arms! To arms!
  And conquer peace for Dixie!
    To arms! To arms!
  And conquer peace for Dixie!


* * * * *


  Hats off!
  Along the street there comes
  A blare of bugles, a ruffle of drums,
  A dash of color beneath the sky:
  Hats off!
  The flag is passing by!

  Blue and crimson and white it shines,
  Over the steel-tipped, ordered lines.
  Hats off!
  The colors before us fly;
  But more than the flag is passing by.

  Sea-fights and land-fights, grim and great,
  Fought to make and to save the State:
  Weary marches and sinking ships;
  Cheers of victory on dying lips;

  Days of plenty and years of peace;
  March of a strong land's swift increase;
  Equal justice, right and law,
  Stately honor and reverend awe;

  Sign of a nation, great and strong
  To ward her people from foreign wrong:
  Pride and glory and honor,—all
  Live in the colors to stand or fall.

  Hats off!
  Along the street there comes
  A blare of bugles, a ruffle of drums;
  And loyal hearts are beating high:
  Hats off!
  The flag is passing by!


* * * * *


  The maid who binds her warrior's sash
    With smile that well her pain dissembles,
  The while beneath her drooping lash
    One starry tear-drop hangs and trembles,
  Though Heaven alone records the tear,
    And Fame shall never know her story,
  Her heart has shed a drop as dear
    As e'er bedewed the field of glory!

  The wife who girds her husband's sword,
    Mid little ones who weep or wonder,
  And bravely speaks the cheering word,
    What though her heart be rent asunder,
  Doomed nightly in her dreams to hear
    The bolts of death around him rattle,
  Hath shed as sacred blood as e'er
    Was poured upon the field of battle!

  The mother who conceals her grief
    While to her breast her son she presses,
  Then breathes a few brave words and brief,
    Kissing the patriot brow she blesses,
  With no one but her secret God
    To know the pain that weighs upon her,
  Sheds holy blood as e'er the sod
    Received on Freedom's field of honor!


* * * * *




  How little recks it where men lie,
    When once the moment's past
  In which the dim and glazing eye
    Has looked on earth its last,—
  Whether beneath the sculptured urn
    The coffined form shall rest,
  Or in its nakedness return
    Back to its mother's, breast!

  Death is a common friend or foe,
    As different men may hold,
  And at his summons each must go,
    The timid and the bold;
  But when the spirit, free and warm,
    Deserts it, as it must,
  What matter where the lifeless form
    Dissolves again to dust?

  The soldier falls 'mid corses piled
  Upon the battle-plain,
  Where reinless war-steeds gallop wild
    Above the mangled slain;
  But though his corse be grim to see,
    Hoof-trampled on the sod,
  What recks it, when the spirit free
    Has soared aloft to God?

  The coward's dying eyes may close
    Upon his downy bed,
  And softest hands his limbs compose,
    Or garments o'er them spread.
  But ye who shun the bloody fray,
    When fall the mangled brave,
  Go—strip his coffin-lid away,
    And see him in his grave!

  'Twere sweet, indeed, to close our eyes,
    With those we cherish near,
  And, wafted upwards by their sighs,
    Soar to some calmer sphere.
  But whether on the scaffold high,
    Or in the battle's van,
  The fittest place where man can die
    Is where he dies for man!


* * * * *


  What man is there so bold that he should say,
  "Thus, and thus only, would I have the Sea"?
  For whether lying calm and beautiful,
  Clasping the earth in love, and throwing back
  The smile of Heaven from waves of amethyst;
  Or whether, freshened by the busy winds,
  It bears the trade and navies of the world
  To ends of use or stern activity;
  Or whether, lashed by tempests, it gives way
  To elemental fury, howls and roars
  At all its rocky barriers, in wild lust
  Of ruin drinks the blood of living things,
  And strews its wrecks o'er leagues of desolate shore,—
  Always it is the Sea, and men bow down
  Before its vast and varied majesty.

  So all in vain will timorous ones essay
  To set the metes and bounds of Liberty.
  For Freedom is its own eternal law:
  It makes its own conditions, and in storm
  Or calm alike fulfils the unerring Will.
  Let us not then despise it when it lies
  Still as a sleeping lion, while a swarm
  Of gnat-like evils hover round its head;
  Nor doubt it when in mad, disjointed times
  It shakes the torch of terror, and its cry
  Shrills o'er the quaking earth, and in the flame
  Of riot and war we see its awful form
  Rise by the scaffold, where the crimson axe
  Rings down its grooves the knell of shuddering kings.
  For ever in thine eyes, O Liberty,
  Shines that high light whereby the world is saved,
  And though thou slay us, we will trust in thee!


* * * * *



  Be patient, O be patient! Put your ear against the earth;
  Listen there how noiselessly the germ o' the seed has birth;
  How noiselessly and gently it upheaves its little way
  Till it parts the scarcely-broken ground, and the blade stands up in
          the day.

  Be patient, O be patient! the germs of mighty thought
  Must have their silent undergrowth, must underground be wrought;
  But, as sure as ever there's a Power that makes the grass appear,
  Our land shall be green with Liberty, the blade-time shall be here.

  Be patient, O be patient! go and watch the wheat-ears grow,
  So imperceptibly that ye can mark nor change nor throe:
  Day after day, day after day till the ear is fully grown;
  And then again day after day, till the ripened field is brown.

  Be patient, O be patient! though yet our hopes are green,
  The harvest-field of Freedom shall be crowned with the sunny sheen.
  Be ripening, be ripening! mature your silent way
  Till the whole broad land is tongued with fire on Freedom's harvest


* * * * *


    Here are old trees, tail oaks and gnarled pines,
  That stream with gray-green mosses; here the ground
  Was never trenched by spade, and flowers spring up
  Unsown, and die ungathered. It is sweet
  To linger here, among the flitting birds,
  And leaping squirrels, wandering brooks, and winds
  That shake the leaves, and scatter, as they pass,
  A fragrance from the cedars, thickly set
  With pale blue berries. In these peaceful shades—
  Peaceful, unpruned, immeasurably old—
  My thoughts go up the long dim path of years,
  Back to the earliest days of liberty.

    Oh FREEDOM! thou art not, as poets dream,
  A fair young girl, with light and delicate limbs,
  And wavy tresses gushing from the cap
  With which the Roman master crowned his slave
  When he took off the gyves. A bearded man,
  Armed to the teeth, art thou; one mailèd hand
  Grasps the broad shield, and one the sword; thy brow,
  Glorious in beauty though it be, is scarred
  With tokens of old wars; thy massive limbs
  Are strong with struggling. Power at thee has launched
  His bolts, and with his lightnings smitten thee;
  They could not quench the life thou hast from heaven.
  Merciless power has dug thy dungeon deep,
  And his swart armorers, by a thousand fires,
  Have forged thy chain; yet, while he deems thee bound,
  The links are shivered, and the prison walls
  Fall outward: terribly thou springest forth,
  As springs the flame above a burning pile,
  And shoutest to the nations, who return
  Thy shoutings, while the pale oppressor flies.

    Thy birthright was not given by human hands:
  Thou wert twin-born with man. In pleasant fields,
  While yet our race was few, thou sat'st with him,
  To tend the quiet flock and watch the stars,
  And teach the reed to utter simple airs.
  Thou by his side, amid the tangled wood,
  Didst war upon the panther and the wolf,
  His only foes; and thou with him didst draw
  The earliest furrows on the mountain side,
  Soft with the deluge. Tyranny himself,
  Thy enemy, although of reverend look,
  Hoary with many years, and far obeyed,
  Is later born than thou; and as he meets
  The grave defiance of thine elder eye,
  The usurper trembles in his fastnesses.

    Thou shalt wax stronger with the lapse of years,
  But he shall fade into a feebler age;
  Feebler, yet subtler. He shall weave his snares,
  And spring them on thy careless steps, and clap
  His withered hands, and from their ambush call
  His hordes to fall upon thee. He shall send
  Quaint maskers, forms of fair and gallant mien,
  To catch thy gaze, and uttering graceful words
  To charm thy ear; while his sly imps, by stealth,
  Twine around thee threads of steel, light thread on thread,
  That grow to fetters; or bind down thy arms
  With chains concealed in chaplets. Oh! not yet
  May'st thou unbrace thy corselet, nor lay by
  Thy sword; nor yet, O Freedom! close thy lids
  In slumber; for thine enemy never sleeps,
  And thou must watch and combat till the day
  Of the new earth and heaven. But wouldst thou rest
  Awhile from tumult and the frauds of men,
  These old and friendly solitudes invite
  Thy visit. They, while yet the forest trees
  Were young upon the unviolated earth,
  And yet the moss-stains on the rock were new,
  Beheld thy glorious childhood, and rejoiced.


* * * * *


  What's hallowed ground? Has earth a clod
  Its Maker meant not should be trod
  By man, the image of his God,
    Erect and free,
  Unscourged by Superstition's rod
    To bow the knee?

  That's hallowed ground where, mourned and missed,
  The lips repose our love has kissed;—
  But where's their memory's mansion? Is't
    Yon churchyard's bowers?
  No! in ourselves their souls exist,
    A part of ours.

  A kiss can consecrate the ground
  Where mated hearts are mutual bound:
  The spot where love's first links were wound,
    That ne'er are riven,
  Is hallowed down to earth's profound,
    And up to heaven!

  For time makes all but true love old;
  The burning thoughts that then were told
  Run molten still in memory's mould;
    And will not cool
  Until the heart itself be cold
    In Lethe's pool.

  What hallows ground where heroes sleep?
  'Tis not the sculptured piles you heap!
  In dews that heavens far distant weep
      Their turf may bloom;
  Or Genii twine beneath the deep
      Their coral tomb.

  But strew his ashes to the wind
  Whose sword or voice has served mankind,—
  And is he dead, whose glorious mind
    Lifts thine on high?—
  To live in hearts we leave behind
    Is not to die.

  Is't death to fall for Freedom's right?
  He's dead alone that lacks her light!
  And murder sullies in heaven's sight
    The sword he draws:—
  What can alone ennoble fight?
    A noble cause!

  Give that,—and welcome War to brace
  Her drums, and rend heaven's reeking space!
  The colors planted face to face,
    The charging cheer,
  Though Death's pale horse lead on the chase,
    Shall still be dear.

  And place our trophies where men kneel
  To Heaven!—but Heaven rebukes my zeal!
  The cause of Truth and human weal,
    O God above!
  Transfer it from the sword's appeal
    To Peace and Love.

  Peace, Love! the cherubim, that join
  Their spread wings o'er Devotion's shrine,
  Prayers sound in vain, and temples shine,
    Where they are not,—
  The heart alone can make divine
    Religion's spot.

  To incantations dost thou trust,
  And pompous rites in domes august?
  See mouldering stones and metal's rust
    Belie the vaunt,
  That man can bless one pile of dust
    With chime or chant.

  The ticking wood-worm mocks thee, man!
  Thy temples,—creeds themselves grow wan!
  But there's a dome of nobler span,
    A temple given
  Thy faith, that bigots dare not ban,—
    Its space is heaven!

  Its roof, star-pictured Nature's ceiling,
  Where, trancing the rapt spirit's feeling,
  And God himself to man revealing,
    The harmonious spheres
  Make music, though unheard their pealing
    By mortal ears.

  Fair stars! are not your beings pure?
  Can sin, can death, your worlds obscure?
  Else why so swell the thoughts at your
    Aspect above?
  Ye must be heavens that make us sure
    Of heavenly love!

  And in your harmony sublime
  I read the doom of distant time;
  That man's regenerate soul from crime
    Shall yet be drawn,
  And reason on his mortal clime
    Immortal dawn.

  What's hallowed ground? 'Tis what gives birth
  To sacred thoughts in souls of worth!—
  Peace! Independence! Truth! go forth
    Earth's compass round;
  And your high-priesthood shall make earth
    All hallowed ground.


* * * * *


  A prowling wolf, whose shaggy skin
  (So strict the watch of dogs had been)
    Hid little but his bones,
  Once met a mastiff dog astray.
  A prouder, fatter, sleeker Tray
    No human mortal owns.
      Sir Wolf, in famished plight,
    Would fain have made a ration
    Upon his fat relation:
      But then he first must fight;
    And well the dog seemed able
    To save from wolfish table
      His carcass snug and tight.
  So then in civil conversation
  The wolf expressed his admiration
  Of Tray's fine case. Said Tray politely,
  "Yourself, good sir, may be as sightly;
  Quit but the woods, advised by me:
  For all your fellows here, I see,
  Are shabby wretches, lean and gaunt,
  Belike to die of haggard want.
  With such a pack, of course it follows,
  One fights for every bit he swallows.
    Come then with me, and share
  On equal terms our princely fare."
      "But what with you
      Has one to do?"
  Inquires the wolf. "Light work indeed,"
  Replies the dog: "you only need
  To bark a little now and then,
  To chase off duns and beggar-men,
  To fawn on friends that come or go forth,
  Your master please, and so forth;
    For which you have to eat
    All sorts of well-cooked meat—
  Cold pullets, pigeons, savory messes—
  Besides unnumbered fond caresses."
    The wolf, by force of appetite,
    Accepts the terms outright,
    Tears glistened in his eyes;
    But faring on, he spies
  A galled spot on the mastiff's neck.
  "What's that?" he cries. "Oh, nothing but a speck."
  "A speck?"—"Ay, ay: 'tis not enough to pain me:
  Perhaps the collar's mark by which they chain me."
    "Chain! chain you! What! run you not, then,
        Just where you please and when?"
      "Not always, sir; but what of that?"
      "Enough for me, to spoil your fat!
      It ought to be a precious price
      Which could to servile chains entice;
      For me, I'll shun them while I've wit."
      So ran Sir Wolf, and runneth yet.

From the French of JEAN DE LA FONTAINE.

Translation of ELIZUR WRIGHT.

* * * * *



  I come not here to talk. Ye know too well
  The story of our thraldom. We are slaves!
  The bright sun rises to his course, and lights
  A race of slaves! he sets, and his last beam
  Falls on a slave! Not such as, swept along
  By the full tide of power, the conqueror leads
  To crimson glory and undying fame,
  But base, ignoble slaves!—slaves to a horde
  Of petty tyrants, feudal despots; lords
  Rich in some dozen paltry villages,
  Strong in some hundred spearmen, only great
  In that strange spell,—a name! Each hour, dark fraud,
  Or open rapine, or protected murder,
  Cries out against them. But this very day
  An honest man, my neighbor (pointing to PAOLO),
      —there he stands,—
  Was struck—struck like a dog—by one who wore
  The badge of Ursini! because, forsooth,
  He tossed not high his ready cap in air,
  Nor lifted up his voice in servile shouts,
  At sight of that great ruffian! Be we men,
  And suffer such dishonor? men, and wash not
  The stain away in blood? Such shames are common.
  I have known deeper wrongs. I, that speak to ye,
  I had a brother once, a gracious boy,
  Full of all gentleness, of calmest hope,
  Of sweet and quiet joy; there was the look
  Of Heaven upon his face which limners give
  To the beloved disciple. How I loved
  That gracious boy! younger by fifteen years,
  Brother at once and son! He left my side;
  A summer bloom on his fair cheeks, a smile
  Parting his innocent lips. In one short hour
  The pretty, harmless boy was slain! I saw
  The corse, the mangled corse, and then I cried
  For vengeance! Rouse ye, Romans! Rouse ye, slaves!
  Have ye brave sons?—Look in the next fierce brawl
  To see them die! Have ye fair daughters?—Look
  To see them live, torn from your arms, distained.
  Dishonored; and, if ye dare call for justice,
  Be answered by the lash! Yet this is Rome,
  That sat on her seven hills, and from her throne
  Of beauty ruled the world! Yet we are Romans!
  Why, in that elder day, to be a Roman
  Was greater than a king! And once again—
  Hear me, ye walls, that echoed to the tread
  Of either Brutus!—once again, I swear,
  The eternal city shall be free; her sons shall walk with princes.


* * * * *



  Clime of the unforgotten brave!
  Whose land, from plain to mountain-cave,
  Was Freedom's home or Glory's grave!
  Shrine of the mighty! can it be
  That this is all remains of thee?
  Approach, thou craven, crouching slave;
    Say, is not this Thermopylae?
  These waters blue that round you lave,
    O servile offspring of the free,—
  Pronounce what sea, what shore is this?
  The gulf, the rock of Salamis!
  These scenes, their story not unknown,
  Arise, and make again your own;
  Snatch from the ashes of your sires
  The embers of their former fires;
  And he who in the strife expires
  Will add to theirs a name of fear
  That Tyranny shall quake to hear,
  And leave his sons a hope, a fame,
  They too will rather die than shame;
  For Freedom's battle once begun,
  Bequeathed by bleeding sire to son,
  Though baffled oft is ever won.
  Hear witness, Greece, thy living page;
  Attest it, many a deathless age:
  While kings, in dusty darkness hid,
  Have left a nameless pyramid,
  Thy heroes, though the general doom
  Hath swept the column from their tomb,
  A mightier monument command,
  The mountains of their native land!
  There points thy Muse to stranger's eye
  The graves of those that cannot die!
  'Twere long to tell, and sad to trace,
  Each step from splendor to disgrace:
  Enough,—no foreign foe could quell
  Thy soul, till from itself it fell;
  Yes! self-abasement paved the way
  To villain-bonds and despot sway.

  What can he tell who treads thy shore?
    No legend of thine olden time,
  No theme on which the Muse might soar,
  High as thine own in days of yore,
    When man was worthy of thy clime.
  The hearts within thy valleys bred,
  The fiery souls that might have led
    Thy sons to deeds sublime,
  Now crawl from cradle to the grave,
  Slaves—nay, the bondsmen of a slave,
    And callous save to crime.


* * * * *



    Fair Greece! sad relic of departed worth!
    Immortal, though no more; though fallen, great!
    Who now shall lead thy scattered children forth,
    And long-accustomed bondage uncreate?
    Not such thy sons who whilom did await,
    The hopeless warriors of a willing doom,
    In bleak Thermopylæ's sepulchral strait,—
    O, who that gallant spirit shall resume,
  Leap from Eurotas' banks, and call thee from the tomb?

    Spirit of Freedom! when on Phyle's brow
    Thou sat'st with Thrasybulus and his train,
    Couldst thou forebode the dismal hour which now
    Dims the green beauties of thine Attic plain?
    Not thirty tyrants now enforce the chain,
    But every earle can lord it o'er thy land;
    Nor rise thy sons, but idly rail in vain,
    Trembling beneath the scourge of Turkish hand,
  From birth till death enslaved; in word, in deed, unmanned.

    In all save form alone, how changed! and who
    That marks the fire still sparkling in each eye,
    Who but would deem their bosoms burned anew
    With thy unquenched beam, lost liberty!
    And many dream withal the hour is nigh
    That gives them back their fathers' heritage;
    For foreign arms and aid they fondly sigh,
    Nor solely dare encounter hostile rage,
  Or tear their name defiled from Slavery's mournful page.

    Hereditary bondsmen! know ye not,
    Who would be free themselves must strike the blow?
    By their right arms the conquest must be wrought?
    Will Gaul or Muscovite redress ye? No!
    True, they may lay your proud despoilers low,
    But not for you will Freedom's altars flame.
    Shades of the Helots! triumph o'er your foe!
    Greece! change thy lords, thy state is still the same;
  Thy glorious day is o'er, but not thy years of shame!

    And yet how lovely in thine age of woe,
    Land of lost gods and godlike men, art thou!
    Thy vales of evergreen, thy hills of snow,
    Proclaim thee Nature's varied favorite now.
    Thy fanes, thy temples to thy surface bow,
    Commingling slowly with heroic earth.
    Broke by the share of every rustic plough:
    So perish monuments of mortal birth.
  So perish all in turn, save well-recorded worth;

    Save where some solitary column mourns
    Above its prostrate brethren of the cave;
    Save where Tritonia's airy shrine adorns
    Colonna's cliff, and gleams along the wave;
    Save o'er some warrior's half-forgotten grave,
    Where the gray stones and long-neglected grass
    Ages, but not oblivion, feebly brave,
    While strangers only not regardless pass,
  Lingering like me, perchance, to gaze, and sigh

    Yet are thy skies as blue, thy crags as wild,
    Sweet are thy groves, and verdant are thy fields,
    Thine olive ripe as when Minerva smiled,
    And still his honeyed wealth Hymettus yields;
    There the blithe bee his fragrant fortress builds,
    The free-born wanderer of thy mountain air;
    Apollo still thy long, long summer gilds,
    Still in his beam Mendeli's marbles glare:
  Art, Glory, Freedom fail, but Nature still is fair.

    Where'er we tread, 'tis haunted, holy ground;
    No earth of thine is lost in vulgar mould,
    But one vast realm of wonder spreads around,
    And all the Muse's tales seem truly told,
    Till the sense aches with gazing to behold
    The scenes our earliest dreams have dwelt upon:
    Each hill and dale, each deepening glen and wold,
    Defies the power which crushed thy temples gone:
  Age shakes Athena's tower, but spares gray Marathon.


* * * * *



  The isles of Greece, the isles of Greece!
    Where burning Sappho loved and sung,
  Where grew the arts of war and peace,
    Where Delos rose, and Phoebus sprung!
  Eternal summer gilds them yet;
  But all, except their sun, is set.

  The Scian and the Teian muse,
    The hero's harp, the lover's lute,
  Have found the fame your shores refuse;
    Their place of birth alone is mute
  To sounds which echo further west
  Than your sires' Islands of the Blest.

  The mountains look on Marathon,
    And Marathon looks on the sea:
  And musing there an hour alone,
    I dreamed that Greece might still be free;
  For, standing on the Persians' grave,
  I could not deem myself a slave.

  A king sat on the rocky brow
    Which looks o'er sea-born Salamis;
  And ships, by thousands, lay below,
    And men in nations—all were his!
  He counted them at break of day—
  And when the sun set, where were they?

  And where are they? and where art thou,
    My country? On thy voiceless shore
  The heroic lay is tuneless now,
    The heroic bosom beats no more!
  And must thy lyre, so long divine,
  Degenerate into hands like mine?

  'Tis something in the dearth of fame,
    Though linked among a fettered race,
  To feel at least a patriot's shame,
    Even as I sing, suffuse my face;
  For what is left the poet here?
  For Greeks a blush—for Greece a tear.

  Must we but weep o'er days more blest?
    Must we but blush? Our fathers bled.
  Earth! render back from out thy breast
    A remnant of our Spartan dead!
  Of the three hundred grant but three,
  To make a new Thermopylae!

  What! silent still? and silent all?
    Ah no!—the voices of the dead
  Sound like a distant torrent's fall,
    And answer, "Let one living head,
  But one, arise—we come, we come!"
  'Tis but the living who are dumb.

  In vain,—in vain; strike other chords;
    Fill high the cup with Samian wine!
  Leave battles to the Turkish hordes,
    And shed the blood of Scio's vine!
  Hark! rising to the ignoble call,
  How answers each bold Bacchanal!

  You have the Pyrrhic dance as yet,—
    Where is the Pyrrhic phalanx gone?
  Of two such lessons, why forget
    The nobler and the manlier one?
  You have the letters Cadmus gave,—
  Think ye he meant them for a slave?

  Fill high the bowl with Samian wine!
    We will not think of themes like these!
  It made Anacreon's song divine:
    He served, but served Polycrates,—
  A tyrant; but our masters then
  Were still, at least, our countrymen.

  The tyrant of the Chersonese
    Was freedom's best and bravest friend;
  That tyrant was Miltiades!
    O that the present hour would lend
  Another despot of the kind!
  Such chains as his were sure to bind.

  Fill high the bowl with Samian wine!
    On Suli's rock and Parga's shore
  Exists the remnant of a line
    Such as the Doric mothers bore;
  And there perhaps some seed is sown
  The Heracleidan blood might own.

  Trust not for freedom to the Franks,—
    They have a king who buys and sells:
  In native swords, and native ranks,
    The only hope of courage dwells;
  But Turkish force, and Latin fraud,
  Would break your shield, however broad.

  Fill high the bowl with Samian wine!
    Our virgins dance beneath the shade,—
  see their glorious black eyes shine;
    But, gazing on each glowing maid,
  My own the burning tear-drop laves,
  To think such breasts must suckle slaves.

  Place me on Sunium's marbled steep,
    Where nothing, save the waves and I,
  May hear our mutual murmurs sweep;
    There, swan-like, let me sing and die.
  A land of slaves shall ne'er be mine,—
  Dash down yon cup of Samian wine!


* * * * *


  When Love with unconfinèd wings
    Hovers within my gates,
  And by divine Althea brings
    To whisper at my grates;
  When I lie tangled in her hair
    And fettered with her eye,
  The birds that wanton in the air
    Know no such liberty.

  When flowing cups pass swiftly round
    With no allaying Thames,
  Our careless heads with roses crowned,
    Our hearts with loyal flames;
  When thirsty grief in wine we steep,
    When healths and draughts go free,
  Fishes that tipple in the deep
    Know no such liberty.

  When, like committed linnets, I
    With shriller throat shall sing
  The mercy, sweetness, majesty
    And glories of my King;
  When I shall voice aloud, how good
    He is, how great should be,
  Enlargèd winds that curl the flood
    Know no such liberty.

  Stone walls do not a prison make,
    Nor iron bars a cage;
  Minds innocent and quiet take
    That for an hermitage:
  If I have freedom in my love,
    And in my soul am free,
  Angels alone, that soar above,
    Enjoy such liberty.


* * * * *



    O for a lodge in some vast wilderness,
  Some boundless contiguity of shade,
  Where rumor of oppression and deceit,
  Of unsuccessful or successful war,
  Might never reach me more! My ear is pained,
  My soul is sick, with every day's report
  Of wrong and outrage with which earth is filled.
  There is no flush in man's obdurate heart;
  It does not feel for man; the natural bond
  Of brotherhood is served as the flax,
  That falls asunder at the touch of fire.
  He finds his fellow guilty of a skin
  Not colored like his own, and, having power
  To enforce the wrong, for such a worthy cause
  Dooms and devotes him as his lawful prey.
  Lands intersected by a narrow frith
  Abhor each other. Mountains interposed
  Make enemies of nations, who had else
  Like kindred drops been mingled into one.
  Thus man devotes his brother, and destroys;
  And, worse than all, and most to be deplored
  As human nature's broadest, foulest blot,
  Chains him, and tasks him, and exacts his sweat
  With stripes, that Mercy, with a bleeding heart,
  Weeps, when she sees inflicted on a beast.
  Then what is man? And what man, seeing this,
  And having human feelings, does not blush,
  And hang his head, to think himself a man?
  I would not have a slave to till my ground,
  To carry me, to fan me while I sleep,
  And tremble when I wake, for all the wealth
  That sinews bought and sold have ever earned.
  No; dear as freedom is, and in my heart's
  Just estimation prized above all price,
  I had much rather be myself the slave,
  And wear the bonds, than fasten them on him.
  We have no slaves at home.—Then why abroad?
  And they themselves, once ferried o'er the wave
  That parts us, are emancipate and loosed.
  Slaves cannot breathe in England; if their lungs
  Receive our air, that moment they are free;
  They touch our country, and their shackles fall.
  That's noble, and bespeaks a nation proud
  And jealous of the blessing. Spread it then,
  And let it circulate through every vein
  Of all your empire; that, where Britain's power
  Is felt, mankind may feel her mercy too.


* * * * *


[After the English Revolution of 1688, all bishops were compelled to
swear allegiance to William and Mary. Seven of them, adherents of
James II., refused and were imprisoned for treason,—the "Non-Jurors."
Trelawney of Cornwall was one.]

  A good sword and a trusty hand,
    A merry heart and true,
  King James's men shall understand
    What Cornish lads can do.
  And have they fixed the where and when,
    And shall Trelawney die?
  Then twenty thousand Cornish men
    Will know the reason why.
  What! will they scorn Tre, Pol, and Pen?
    And shall Trelawney die?
  Then twenty thousand under ground
    Will know the reason why

  Out spake the captain brave and bold,
    A merry wight was he:
  "Though London's Tower were Michael's hold,
    We'll set Trelawney free.
  We'll cross the Tarnar hand to hand,
    The Exe shall be no stay;
  We'll side by side from strand to strand,
    And who shall bid us nay?
  What! will they scorn Tre, Pol, and Pen?
    And shall Trelawney die?
  Then twenty thousand Cornish men
    Will know the reason why

  "And when we come to London wall
    We'll shout with it in view,
  'Come forth, come forth, ye cowards all!
    We're better men than you!
  Trelawney, he's in keep and hold,
    Trelawney, he may die;
  But here's twenty thousand Cornish bold
    Will know the reason why!'
  What! will they scorn Tre, Pol, and Pen?
    And shall Trelawney die?
  Then twenty thousand under ground
    Will know the reason why


* * * * *


  The harp that once through Tara's halls
    The soul of music shed,
  Now hangs as mute on Tara's walls
    As if that soul were fled.
  So sleeps the pride of former days,
    So glory's thrill is o'er,
  And hearts that once beat high for praise
    Now feel that pulse no more!

  No more to chiefs and ladies bright
    The harp of Tara swells;
  The chord alone that breaks at night
    Its tale of ruin tells.
  Thus Freedom now so seldom wakes,
    The only throb she gives
  Is when some heart indignant breaks,
    To show that still she lives.


* * * * *


  As by the shore, at break of day,
  A vanquished chief expiring lay,
  Upon the sands, with broken sword,
    He traced his farewell to the free;
  And there the last unfinished word
    He dying wrote, was "Liberty!"

  At night a sea-bird shrieked the knell
  Of him who thus for freedom fell:
  The words he wrote, ere evening came,
    Were covered by the sounding sea;—
  So pass away the cause and name
    Of him who dies for liberty!


* * * * *


  When freedom from her home was driven,
    'Mid vine-clad vales of Switzerland,
  She sought the glorious Alps of heaven,
  And there, 'mid cliffs by lightnings riven,
    Gathered her hero-band.

  And still outrings her freedom-song,
    Amid the glaciers sparkling there,
  At Sabbath bell, as peasants throng
  Their mountain fastnesses along,
    Happy, and free as air.

  The hills were made for freedom; they
    Break at a breath the tyrant's rod;
  Chains clank in valleys; there the prey
  Writhes 'neath Oppression's heel alway:
    Hills bow to none but God!


* * * * *



    Once Switzerland was free! With what a pride
  I used to walk these hills,—look up to heaven,
  And bless God that it was so! It was free
  From end to end, from cliff to lake 'twas free!
  Free as our torrents are, that leap our rocks,
  And plough our valleys, without asking leave;
  Or as our peaks, that wear their caps of snow
  In very presence of the regal sun!
  How happy was I in it then! I loved
  Its very storms. Ay, often have I sat
  In my boat at night, when, midway o'er the lake,
  The stars went out, and down the mountain gorge
  The wind came roaring,—I have sat and eyed
  The thunder breaking from his cloud, and smiled
  To see him shake his lightnings o'er my head,
  And think—I had no master save his own!


* * * * *


[Battle of Sempach, fourteenth century.]

    "Make way for Liberty!"—he cried;
  Made way for Liberty, and died!
    In arms the Austrian phalanx stood,
  A living wall, a human wood!
  A wall, where every conscious stone
  Seemed to its kindred thousands grown;
  A rampart all assaults to bear,
  Till time to dust their frames should wear;
  A wood like that enchanted grove
  In which with fiends Rinaldo strove,
  Where every silent tree possessed
  A spirit prisoned in its breast,
  Which the first stroke of coming strife
  Would startle into hideous life:
  So dense, so still, the Austrians stood,
  A living wall, a human wood!
  Impregnable their front appears,
  All horrent with projected spears,
  Whose polished points before them shine,
  From flank to flank, one brilliant line,
  Bright as the breakers' splendors run
  Along the billows to the sun.

    Opposed to these, a hovering band
  Contended for their native land:
  Peasants, whose new-found strength had broke
  From manly necks the ignoble yoke,
  And forged their fetters into swords,
  On equal terms to fight their lords,
  And what insurgent rage had gained
  In many a mortal fray maintained:
  Marshalled once more at Freedom's call,
  They came to conquer or to fall,
  Where he who conquered, he who fell,
  Was deemed a dead, or living, Tell!
  Such virtues had that patriot breathed,
  So to the soil his soul bequeathed,
  That wheresoe'er his arrows flew
  Heroes in his own likeness grew,
  And warriors sprang from every sod
  Which his awakening footstep trod.

    And now the work of life and death
  Hung on the passing of a breath;
  The fire of conflict burned within,
  The battle trembled to begin:
  Yet, while the Austrians held their ground,
  Point for attack was nowhere found;
  Where'er the impatient Switzers gazed,
  The unbroken line of lances blazed:
  That line 'twere suicide to meet,
  And perish at their tyrants' feet,—
  How could they rest within their graves,
  And leave their homes the homes of slaves?
  Would they not feel their children tread
  With clanging chains above their head?

    It must not be: this day, this hour,
  Annihilates the oppressor's power;
  All Switzerland is in the field,
  She will not fly, she cannot yield,—
  She must not fall; her better fate
  Here gives her an immortal date.
  Few were the numbers she could boast;
  But every freeman was a host,
  And felt as though himself were he
  On whose sole arm hung victory.

    It did depend on one indeed;
  Behold him,—Arnold Winkelried!
  There sounds not to the trump of fame
  The echo of a nobler name.

  Unmarked he stood amid the throng,
  In rumination deep and long,
  Till you might see, with sudden grace,
  The very thought come o'er his face,
  And by the motion of his form
  Anticipate the bursting storm,
  And by the uplifting of his brow
  Tell where the bolt would strike, and how.

    But ' twas no sooner thought than done,
  The field was in a moment won:—

    "Make way for Liberty!" he cried,
  Then ran, with arms extended wide,
  As if his dearest friend to clasp;
  Ten spears he swept within his grasp.

    "Make way for Liberty!" he cried;
  Their keen points met from side to side;
  He bowed amongst them like a tree,
  And thus made way for Liberty.

    Swift to the breach his comrades fly;
  "Make way for Liberty!" they cry,
  And through the Austrian phalanx dart,
  As rushed the spears through Arnold's heart;
  While, instantaneous as his fall,
  Rout, ruin, panic, scattered all:
  An earthquake could not overthrow
  A city with a surer blow.

    Thus Switzerland again was free;
  Thus Death made way for Liberty!


* * * * *



  O sacred Truth! thy triumph ceased awhile,
  And Hope, thy sister, ceased with thee to smile,
  When leagued Oppression poured to Northern wars
  Her whiskered pandours and her fierce hussars,
  Waved her dread standard to the breeze of morn,
  Pealed her loud drum, and twanged her trumpet horn;
  Tumultuous horror brooded o'er her van,
  Presaging wrath to Poland—and to man!
    Warsaw's last champion from her height surveyed,
  Wide o'er the fields, a waste of ruin laid;
  "O Heaven!" he cried, "my bleeding country save!—
  Is there no hand on high to shield the brave?
  Yet, though destruction sweep these lovely plains,
  Rise, fellow-men! our country yet remains!
  By that dread name, we wave the sword on high,
  And swear for her to live—with her to die!"
    He said, and on the rampart-heights arrayed
  His trusty warriors, few, but undismayed;
  Firm-paced and slow, a horrid front they form,
  Still as the breeze, but dreadful as the storm;
  Low murmuring sounds along their banners fly,
  Revenge, or death,—the watchword and reply;
  Then pealed the notes, omnipotent to charm,
  And the loud tocsin tolled their last alarm!—
    In vain, alas! in vain, ye gallant few!
  From rank to rank your volleyed thunder flew:—
  O, bloodiest picture in the book of Time!
  Sarmatia fell, unwept, without a crime;
  Found not a generous friend, a pitying foe,
  Strength in her arms, nor mercy in her woe!
  Dropped from her nerveless grasp the shattered spear,
  Closed her bright eye, and curbed her high career;
  Hope, for a season, bade the world farewell,
  And Freedom shrieked—as Kosciusko fell!


* * * * *


  Ye sons of freedom, wake to glory!
    Hark! hark! what myriads bid you rise!
  Your children, wives, and grandsires hoary,
    Behold their tears and hear their cries!
  Shall hateful tyrants, mischiefs breeding,
      With hireling hosts, a ruffian band,
      Affright and desolate the land,
  While peace and liberty lie bleeding?
      To arms! to arms! ye brave!
        The avenging sword unsheathe;
      March on! march on! all hearts resolved
        On victory or death.

  Now, now the dangerous storm is rolling,
    Which treacherous kings confederate raise;
  The dogs of war, let loose, are howling,
    And lo! our fields and cities blaze;
  And shall we basely view the ruin,
      While lawless force, with guilty stride,
      Spreads desolation far and wide,
  With crimes and blood his hands imbruing?
        To arms! to arms! ye brave, etc.

  O Liberty! can man resign thee,
    Once having felt thy generous flame?
  Can dungeons, bolts, or bars confine thee?
    Or whips thy noble spirit tame?
  Too long the world has wept, bewailing
      That falsehood's dagger tyrants wield,
      But freedom is our sword and shield,
  And all their arts are unavailing.
        To arms! to arms! ye brave, etc.


* * * * *


  Her hair was tawny with gold, her eyes with purple were dark,
  Her cheeks' pale opal burnt with a red and restless spark.

  Never was lady of Milan nobler in name and in race;
  Never was lady of Italy fairer to see in the face.

  Never was lady on earth more true as woman and wife,
  Larger in judgment and instinct, prouder in manners and life.

  She stood in the early morning, and said to her maidens, "Bring
  That silken robe made ready to wear at the court of the king.

  "Bring me the clasps of diamonds, lucid, clear of the mote,
  Clasp me the large at the waist, and clasp me the small at the throat.

  "Diamonds to fasten the hair, and diamonds to fasten the sleeves,
  Laces to drop from their rays, like a powder of snow from the eaves."

  Gorgeous she entered the sunlight which gathered her up in a flame,
  While straight, in her open carriage, she to the hospital came.

  In she went at the door, and gazing, from end to end,
  "Many and low are the pallets, but each is the place of a friend."

  Up she passed through the wards, and stood at a young man's bed:
  Bloody the band on his brow, and livid the droop of his head.

  "Art thou a Lombard, my brother? Happy art thou!" she cried,
  And smiled like Italy on him: he dreamed in her face and died.

  Pale with his passing soul, she went on still to a second:
  He was a grave, hard man, whose years by dungeons were reckoned.

  Wounds in his body were sore, wounds in his life were sorer.
  "Art thou a Romagnole?" Her eyes drove lightnings before her.

  "Austrian and priest had joined to double and tighten the cord
  Able to bind thee, O strong one,—free by the stroke of a sword.

  "Now be grave for the rest of us, using the life overcast
  To ripen our wine of the present (too new) in glooms of the past."

  Down she stepped to a pallet where lay a face like a girl's,
  Young, pathetic with dying,—a deep black hole in the curls.

  "Art thou from Tuscany, brother? and seest thou, dreaming in pain,
  Thy mother stand in the piazza, searching the list of the slain?"

  Kind as a mother herself, she touched his cheeks with her hands:
  "Blessèd is she who has borne thee, although she should weep as she

  On she passed to a Frenchman, his arm carried off by a ball:
  Kneeling,… "O more than my brother! how shall I thank thee for all?

  "Each of the heroes round us has fought for his land and line,
  But thou hast fought for a stranger, in hate of a wrong not thine.

  "Happy are all free peoples, too strong to be dispossessed;
  But blessèd are those among nations who dare to be strong for the

  Ever she passed on her way, and came to a couch where pined
  One with a face from Venetia, white with a hope out of mind.

  Long she stood and gazed, and twice she tried at the name,
  But two great crystal tears were all that faltered and came.

  Only a tear for Venice?—she turned as in passion and loss,
  And stooped to his forehead and kissed it, as if she were kissing
          the cross.

  Faint with that strain of heart, she moved on then to another,
  Stern and strong in his death. "And dost thou suffer, my brother?"

  Holding his hands in hers:—"Out of the Piedmont lion
  Cometh the sweetness of freedom! sweetest to live or to die on."

  Holding his cold, rough hands,—"Well, O, well have ye done
  In noble, noble Piedmont, who would not be noble alone."

  Back he fell while she spoke. She rose to her feet with a spring,—
  "That was a Piedmontese! and this is the Court of the King."


* * * * *


  The breaking waves dashed high
    On a stern and rock-bound coast,
  And the woods against a stormy sky
    Their giant branches tossed;

  And the heavy night hung dark
    The hills and waters o'er,
  When a band of exiles moored their bark
    On the wild New England shore.

  Not as the conqueror comes,
    They, the true-hearted, came;
  Not with the roll of the stirring drums,
    And the trumpet that sings of fame:

  Not as the flying come,
    In silence and in fear;—
  They shook the depths of the desert gloom
    With their hymns of lofty cheer.

  Amidst the storm they sang,
    And the stars heard, and the sea;
  And the sounding aisles of the dim woods rang
    To the anthem of the free.

  The ocean eagle soared
    From his nest by the white wave's foam,
  And the rocking pines of the forest roared,—
    This was their welcome home.

  There were men with hoary hair
    Amidst that pilgrim-band:
  Why had they come to wither there,
    Away from their childhood's land?

  There was woman's fearless eye,
    Lit by her deep love's truth;
  There was manhood's brow serenely high,
    And the fiery heart of youth.

  What sought they thus afar?
    Bright jewels of the mine?
  The wealth of the seas, the spoils of war?—
    They sought a faith's pure shrine!

  Ay, call it holy ground,
    The soil where first they trod;
  They have left unstained what there they found,—
    Freedom to worship God.


* * * * *


  When Freedom, from her mountain height,
    Unfurled her standard to the air,
  She tore the azure robe of night,
    And set the stars of glory there!
  She mingled with its gorgeous dyes
  The milky baldric of the skies,
  And striped its pure, celestial white
  With streakings of the morning light;
  Then, from his mansion in the sun,
  She called her eagle-bearer down,
  And gave into his mighty hand
  The symbol of her chosen land!

  Majestic monarch of the cloud!
    Who rear'st aloft thy regal form,
  To hear the tempest trumping loud,
  And see the lightning lances driven,
    When strive the warriors of the storm,
  And rolls the thunder-drum of heaven,—
  Child of the Sun! to thee 'tis given
    To guard the banner of the free,
  To hover in the sulphur smoke,
  To ward away the battle-stroke,
  And bid its blendings shine afar,
  Like rainbows on the cloud of war,
    The harbingers of victory!

  Flag of the brave! thy folds shall fly,
  The sign of hope and triumph high!
  When speaks the signal-trumpet tone,
  And the long line comes gleaming on,
  Ere yet the life-blood, warm and wet,
  Has dimmed the glistening bayonet,
  Each soldier's eye shall brightly turn
  To where thy sky-born glories burn,
  And, as his springing steps advance,
  Catch war and vengeance from the glance.

  And when the cannon-mouthings loud
  Heave in wild wreaths the battle shroud,
  And gory sabres rise and fall
  Like shoots of flame on midnight's pall,
  Then shall thy meteor glances glow,
    And cowering foes shall shrink beneath
  Each gallant arm that strikes below
    That lovely messenger of death.

  Flag of the seas! on ocean wave
  Thy stars shall glitter o'er the brave;
  When death, careering on the gale,
  Sweeps darkly round the bellied sail,
  And frighted waves rush wildly back
  Before the broadside's reeling rack,
  Each dying wanderer of the sea
  Shall look at once to heaven and thee,
  And smile to see thy splendors fly
  In triumph o'er his closing eye.

  Flag of the free heart's hope and home,
    By angel hands to valor given!
  Thy stars have lit the welkin dome,
    And all thy hues were born in heaven.
  Forever float that standard sheet!
  Where breathes the foe but falls before us,
  With Freedom's soil beneath our feet,
    And Freedom's banner streaming o'er us!


* * * * *


[Footnote A: Begun during the attack on Fort McHenry, by a British fleet, which on the night of Sept. 13, 1814, unsuccessfully bombarded that fort from the river Chesapeake; the author, an envoy from the city of Baltimore, having been detained as a prisoner on the fleet.]

  O, say, can you see by the dawn's early light
  What so proudly we hailed at the twilight's last gleaming?—
  Whose broad stripes and bright stars, through the clouds of the fight
  O'er the ramparts we watched, were so gallantly streaming!
  And the rocket's red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
  Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there;
  O! say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave
  O'er the land of the free, and the home of the brave?

  On that shore, dimly seen through the mists of the deep,
  Where the foe's haughty host in dread silence reposes,
  What is that which the breeze, o'er the towering steep,
  As it fitfully blows, now conceals, now discloses?
  Now it catches the gleam of the morning's first beam,
  In full glory reflected now shines on the stream;
  'Tis the star-spangled banner! O, long may it wave
  O'er the land of the free, and the home of the brave!

  And where is that band who so vauntingly swore
  That the havoc of war and the battle's confusion
  A home and a country should leave us no more?
  Their blood has washed out their foul footsteps' pollution.
  No refuge could save the hireling and slave
  From the terror of flight, or the gloom of the grave;
  And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
  O'er the land of the free, and the home of the brave!

  O! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
  Between their loved homes and the war's desolation!
  Blest with vict'ry and peace, may the Heaven-rescued land
  Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
  Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
  And this be our motto. "In God is our trust:"
  And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
  O'er the land of the free, and the home of the brave.


* * * * *


  New England's dead! New England's dead!
    On every hill they lie;
  On every field of strife, made red
    By bloody victory.
  Each valley, where the battle poured
    Its red and awful tide,
  Beheld the brave New England sword
    With slaughter deeply dyed.
  Their bones are on the northern hill,
    And on the southern plain,
  By brook and river, lake and rill,
    And by the roaring main.

  The land is holy where they fought,
    And holy where they fell;
  For by their blood that land was bought,
    The land they loved so well,
  Then glory to that valiant band,
  The honored saviours of the land!

  O, few and weak their numbers were,—
    A handful of brave men;
  But to their God they gave their prayer,
    And rushed to battle then.
  The God of battles heard their cry,
  And sent to them the victory.

  They left the ploughshare in the mold,
  Their flocks and herds without a fold,
  The sickle in the unshorn grain,
  The corn, half-garnered, on the plain,
  And mustered, in their simple dress,
  For wrongs to seek a stern redress,
  To right those wrongs, come weal, come woe,
  To perish, or o'ercome their foe.

  And where are ye, O fearless men?
    And where are ye to-day?
  I call:—the hills reply again
    That ye have passed away;
  That on old Bunker's lonely height,
    In Trenton, and in Monmouth ground,
  The grass grows green, the harvest bright
    Above each soldier's mound.
  The bugle's wild and warlike blast
    Shall muster them no more;
  An army now might thunder past,
    And they heed not its roar.
  The starry flag, 'neath which they fought
    In many a bloody day,
  From their old graves shall rouse them not,
    For they have passed away.


* * * * *


  All grim and soiled and brown and tan,
    I saw a Strong One, in his wrath,
  Smiting the godless shrines of man
          Along his path.

  The Church beneath her trembling dome
    Essayed in vain her ghostly charm:
  Wealth shook within his gilded home
          With strange alarm.

  Fraud from his secret chambers fled
    Before the sunlight bursting in:
  Sloth drew her pillow o'er her head
          To drown the din.

  "Spare," Art implored, "yon holy pile;
    That grand old time-worn turret spare:"
  Meek Reverence, kneeling in the aisle
          Cried out, "Forbear!"

  Gray-bearded Use, who, deaf and blind,
    Groped for his old accustomed stone,
  Leaned on his staff, and wept to find
          His seat o'erthrown.

  Young Romance raised his dreamy eyes,
    O'erhung with paly locks of gold,—
  "Why smite," he asked in sad surprise,
          "The fair, the old?"

  Yet louder rang the Strong One's stroke,
    Yet nearer flashed his axe's gleam;
  Shuddering and sick of heart I woke,
          As from a dream.

  I looked: aside the dust-cloud rolled,—
    The Waster seemed the Builder too;
  Upspringing from the ruined Old
          I saw the New.

  'Twas but the ruin of the bad,—
    The wasting of the wrong and ill;
  Whate'er of good the old time had
          Was living still.

  Calm grew the brows of him I feared,
    The frown which awed me passed away,
  And left behind a smile which cheered
          Like breaking day.

  The grain grew green on battle-plains,
    O'er swarded war-mounds grazed the cow;
  The slave stood forging from his chains
          The spade and plough.

  Where frowned the fort, pavilions gay
    And cottage windows, flower-entwined,
  Looked out upon the peaceful bay
          And hills behind.

  Through vine-wreathed cups with wine once red.
    The lights on brimming crystal fell,
  Drawn, sparkling, from the rivulet head
          And mossy well.

  Through prison-walls, like Heaven-sent hope,
    Fresh breezes blew, and sunbeams strayed,
  And with the idle gallows-rope
          The young child played.

  Where the doomed victim in his cell
    Had counted o'er the weary hours,
  Glad school-girls, answering to the bell,
          Came crowned with flowers.

  Grown wiser for the lesson given,
    I fear no longer, for I know
  That where the share is deepest driven
          The best fruits grow.

  The outworn rite, the old abuse,
    The pious fraud transparent grown,
  The good held captive in the use
          Of wrong alone,—

  These wait their doom, from that great law
    Which makes the past time serve to-day;
  And fresher life the world shall draw
          From their decay.

  O backward-looking son of time!
    The new is old, the old is new,
  The cycle of a change sublime
          Still sweeping through.

  So wisely taught the Indian seer;
    Destroying Seva, forming Brahm,
  Who wake by turn Earth's love and fear,
          Are one, the same.

  Idly as thou, in that old day
    Thou mournest, did thy sire repine;
  So, in his time, thy child grown gray
          Shall sigh for thine.

  But life shall on and upward go;
    The eternal step of Progress beats
  To that great anthem, calm and slow,
          Which God repeats.

  Take heart!—the Waster builds again,—
    A charmèd life old Goodness hath;
  The tares may perish,—but the grain
          Is not for death.

  God works in all things; all obey
    His first propulsion from the night:
  Wake thou and watch!—the world is gray
          With morning light!


* * * * *



  High walls and huge the body may confine,
    And iron gates obstruct the prisoner's gaze,
  And massive bolts may baffle his design,
    And vigilant keepers watch his devious ways;
  But scorns the immortal mind such base control:
    No chains can bind it and no cell enclose.
  Swifter than light it flies from pole to pole,
    And in a flash from earth to heaven it goes.
  It leaps from mount to mount; from vale to vale
    It wanders, plucking honeyed fruits and flowers;
  It visits home to hear the fireside tale
    And in sweet converse pass the joyous hours;
  'Tis up before the sun, roaming afar,
  And in its watches wearies every star.


* * * * *


  When a deed is done for Freedom, through the broad earth's aching
  Runs a thrill of joy prophetic, trembling on from east to west,
  And the slave, where'er he cowers, feels the soul within him climb
  To the awful verge of manhood, as the energy sublime
  Of a century bursts full-blossomed on the thorny stem of Time.

  Through the walls of hut and palace shoots the instantaneous throe,
  When the travail of the Ages wrings earth's systems to and fro;
  At the birth of each new Era, with a recognizing start,
  Nation wildly looks at nation, standing with mute lips apart.
  And glad Truth's yet mightier man-child leaps beneath the Future's

  So the Evil's triumph sendeth, with a terror and a chill,
  Under continent to continent, the sense of coming ill,
  And the slave, where'er he cowers, feels his sympathies with God
  In hot tear-drops ebbing earthward, to be drunk up by the sod,
  Till a corpse crawls round unburied, delving in the nobler clod.

  For mankind are one in spirit, and an instinct bears along,
  Round the earth's electric circle, the swift flush of right or
  Whether conscious or unconscious, yet Humanity's vast frame
  Through its ocean-sundered fibres feels the gush of joy or shame;—
  In the gain or loss of one race all the rest have equal claim.

  Once to every man and nation comes the moment to decide,
  In the strife of Truth with Falsehood, for the good or evil side;
  Some great cause, God's new Messiah, offering each the bloom or
  Parts the goats upon the left hand, and the sheep upon the right,
  And the choice goes by forever 'twixt that darkness and that light.

  Hast thou chosen, O my people, on whose party thou shalt stand,
  Ere the Doom from its worn sandals shakes the dust against our land?
  Though the cause of Evil prosper, yet 'tis Truth alone is strong,
  And, albeit she wander outcast now, I see around her throng
  Troops of beautiful, tall angels, to enshield her from all wrong.

  Backward look across the ages and the beacon-moments see,
  That, like peaks of some sunk continent, jut through Oblivion's sea;
  Not an ear in court or market for the low foreboding cry
  Of those Crises, God's stern winnowers, from whose feet earth's
          chaff must fly;
  Never shows the choice momentous till the judgment hath passed by.

  Careless seems the great Avenger; history's pages but record
  One death-grapple in the darkness 'twixt old systems and the Word;
  Truth forever on the scaffold, Wrong forever on the throne,—
  Yet that scaffold sways the Future, and, behind the dim unknown,
  Standeth God within the shadow, keeping watch above his own.

  We see dimly in the Present what is small and what is great,
  Slow of faith, how weak an arm may turn the iron helm of fate,
  But the soul is still oracular; amid the market's din,
  List the ominous stern whisper from the Delphic cave within,—
  "They enslave their children's children who make compromise with

  Slavery, the earthborn Cyclops, fellest of the giant brood,
  Sons of brutish Force and Darkness, who have drenched the earth
           with blood,
  Famished in his self-made desert, blinded by our purer day,
  Gropes in yet unblasted regions for his miserable prey;—
  Shall we guide his gory fingers where our helpless children play?

  Then to side with Truth is noble when we share her wretched crust,
  Ere her cause bring fame and profit, and 'tis prosperous to be just;
  Then it is the brave man chooses, while the coward stands aside,
  Doubting in his abject spirit, till his Lord is crucified,
  And the multitude make virtue of the faith they had denied.

  Count me o'er earth's chosen heroes,—they were souls that stood
  While the men they agonized for hurled the contumelious stone,
  Stood serene, and down the future saw the golden beam incline
  To the side of perfect justice, mastered by their faith divine,
  By one man's plain truth to manhood and to God's supreme design.

  By the light of burning heretics Christ's bleeding feet I track,
  Toiling up new Calvaries ever with the cross that turns not back,
  And these mounts of anguish number how each generation learned
  One new word of that grand Credo which in prophet-hearts hath
  Since the first man stood God-conquered with his face to heaven

  For Humanity sweeps onward: where to-day the martyr stands,
  On the morrow crouches Judas with the silver in his hands;
  Far in front the cross stands ready and the crackling fagots burn,
  While the hooting mob of yesterday in silent awe return
  To glean up the scattered ashes into History's golden urn.

  'Tis as easy to be heroes as to sit the idle slaves
  Of a legendary virtue carved upon our fathers' graves,
  Worshippers of light ancestral make the present light a crime;—
  Was the Mayflower launched by cowards, steered by men behind their
  Turn those tracks toward Past or Future, that make Plymouth rock

  They were men of present valor, stalwart old iconoclasts,
  Unconvinced by axe or gibbet that all virtue was the Past's;
  But we make their truth our falsehood, thinking that hath made us
  Hoarding it in mouldy parchments, while our tender spirits flee
  The rude grasp of that Impulse which drove them across the sea.

  They have rights who dare maintain them; we are traitors to our
  Smothering in their holy ashes Freedom's new-lit altar-fires;
  Shall we make their creed our jailer? Shall we, in our haste to
  From the tombs of the old prophets steal the funeral lamps away
  To light up the martyr-fagots round the prophets of to-day?

  New occasions teach new duties; Time makes ancient good uncouth;
  They must upward still, and onward, who would keep abreast of Truth;
  Lo, before us gleam her camp-fires! we ourselves must Pilgrims be,
  Launch our Mayflower, and steer boldly through the desperate winter
  Nor attempt the Future's portal with the Past's blood-rusted key.

December, 1845.


* * * * *


[Footnote A: Arousing of Anti-Slavery agitation, when it was proposed in Congress to abolish the "Missouri Compromise" and throw open the Territories to slavery if their people should so vote.]


  As when, on Carmel's sterile steep,
    The ancient prophet bowed the knee,
  And seven times sent his servant forth
    To look toward the distant sea;

  There came at last a little cloud,
    Scarce larger than the human hand,
  Spreading and swelling till it broke
    In showers on all the herbless land;

  And hearts were glad, and shouts went up,
    And praise to Israel's mighty God,
  As the sear hills grew bright with flowers,
    And verdure clothed the valley sod,—

  Even so our eyes have waited long;
    But now a little cloud appears,
  Spreading and swelling as it glides
    Onward into the coming years.

  Bright cloud of Liberty! full soon,
    Far stretching from the ocean strand,
  Thy glorious folds shall spread abroad,
    Encircling our beloved land.

  Like the sweet rain on Judah's hills,
    The glorious boon of love shall fall,
  And our bond millions shall arise,
    As at an angel's trumpet-call.

  Then shall a shout of joy go up,—
    The wild, glad cry of freedom come
  From hearts long crushed by cruel hands,
    And songs from lips long sealed and dumb;

  And every bondman's chain be broke,
    And every soul that moves abroad
  In this wide realm shall know and feel
    The blessèd Liberty of God.


* * * * *


  John Brown of Ossawatomie spake on his dying day:
  "I will not have to shrive my soul a priest in Slavery's pay;
  But let some poor slave-mother whom I have striven to free,
  With her children, from the gallows-stair put up a prayer for me!"

  John Brown of Ossawatomie, they led him out to die;
  And lo! a poor slave-mother with her little child pressed nigh:
  Then the bold, blue eye grew tender, and the old harsh face grew
  As he stooped between the jeering ranks and kissed the negro's

  The shadows of his stormy life that moment fell apart,
  And they who blamed the bloody hand forgave the loving heart;
  That kiss from all its guilty means redeemed the good intent,
  And round the grisly fighter's hair the martyr's aureole bent!

  Perish with him the folly that seeks through evil good!
  Long live the generous purpose unstained with human blood!
  Not the raid of midnight terror, but the thought which underlies;
  Not the borderer's pride of daring, but the Christian's sacrifice.

  Nevermore may yon Blue Ridges the Northern rifle hear,
  Nor see the light of blazing homes flash on the negro's spear;
  But let the free-winged angel Truth their guarded passes scale,
  To teach that right is more than might, and justice more than mail!

  So vainly shall Virginia set her battle in array;
  In vain her trampling squadrons knead the winter snow with clay!
  She may strike the pouncing eagle, but she dares not harm the dove;
  And every gate she bars to Hate shall open wide to Love!


* * * * *


  John Brown's body lies a-moldering in the grave,
  John Brown's body lies slumbering in his grave—
  But John Brown's soul is marching with the brave,
            His soul is marching on.

            Glory, glory, hallelujah!
            Glory, glory, hallelujah!
            Glory, glory, hallelujah!
              His soul is marching on.

  He has gone to be a soldier in the Army of the Lord;
  He is sworn as a private in the ranks of the Lord,—
  He shall stand at Armageddon with his brave old sword,
            When Heaven is marching on.

  He shall file in front where the lines of battle form,
  He shall face to front when the squares of battle form—
  Time with the column, and charge in the storm,
            Where men are marching on.

  Ah, foul Tyrants! do ye hear him where he comes?
  Ah, black traitor! do ye know him as he comes,
  In thunder of the cannon and roll of the drums,
            As we go marching on?

  Men may die, and molder in the dust—
  Men may die, and arise again from dust,
  Shoulder to shoulder, in the ranks of the Just,
            When Heaven is marching on.

            Glory, glory, hallelujah!
            Glory, glory, hallelujah!
            Glory, glory, hallelujah!
              His soul is marching on.


* * * * *


  Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord:
  He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are
  He hath loosed the fateful lightning of his terrible swift sword:
       His truth is marching on.

  I have seen him in the watch-fires of a hundred circling camps;
  They have builded him an altar in the evening dews and damps;
  I can read his righteous sentence by the dim and flaring lamps:
       His day is marching on.

  I have read a fiery gospel, writ in burnished rows of steel:
  "As ye deal with my contemners, so with you my grace shall deal;
  Let the Hero, born of woman, crush the serpent with his heel,
       Since God is marching on."

  He has sounded forth the trumpet that shall never call retreat;
  He is sifting out the hearts of men before his judgment-seat:
  O, be swift, my soul, to answer him! be jubilant, my feet!
       Our God is marching on.

  In the beauty of the lilies Christ was born across the sea,
  With a glory in his bosom that transfigures you and me;
  As he died to make men holy, let us die to make men free,
       While God is marching on.


* * * * *


[Footnote A: Fremont's proclamation of martial law in Missouri, in August, 1861, declaring free all slaves of Rebels, was received with ardor by the North, but annulled by President Lincoln as premature.]

  Thy error, Frémont, simply was to act
  A brave man's part, without the statesman's tact,
  And, taking counsel but of common sense,
  To strike at cause as well as consequence.
  O, never yet since Roland wound his horn
  At Roncesvalles has a blast been blown
  Far-heard, wide-echoed, startling as thine own,
  Heard from the van of freedom's hope forlorn!
  It had been safer, doubtless, for the time,
  To flatter treason, and avoid offence
  To that Dark Power whose underlying crime
  Heaves upward its perpetual turbulence.
  But, if thine be the fate of all who break
  The ground for truth's seed, or forerun their years
  Till lost in distance, or with stout hearts make
  A lane for freedom through the level spears,
  Still take thou courage! God has spoken through thee,
  Irrevocable, the mighty words, Be free!
  The land shakes with them, and the slave's dull ear
  Turns from the rice-swamp stealthily to hear.
  Who would recall them now must first arrest
  The winds that blow down from the free North-west,
  Ruffling the Gulf; or like a scroll roll back
  The Mississippi to its upper springs.
  Such words fulfil their prophecy, and lack
  But the full time to harden into things.


* * * * *


  The winds that once the Argo bore
    Have died by Neptune's ruined shrines,
  And her hull is the drift of the deep-sea floor,
    Though shaped of Pelion's tallest pines.
  You may seek her crew on every isle
    Fair in the foam of Ægean seas,
  But out of their rest no charm can wile
    Jason and Orpheus and Hercules.

  And Priam's wail is heard no more
    By windy Ilion's sea-built walls;
  Nor great Achilles, stained with gore,
    Shouts "O ye gods, 'tis Hector falls!"
  On Ida's mount is the shining snow,
    But Jove has gone from its brow away;
  And red on the plain the poppies grow
    Where the Greek and the Trojan fought that day.

  Mother Earth, are the heroes dead?
    Do they thrill the soul of the years no more?
  Are the gleaming snows and the poppies red
    All that is left of the brave of yore?
  Are there none to fight as Theseus fought,
    Far in the young world's misty dawn?
  Or teach as gray-haired Nestor taught?
    Mother Earth, are the heroes gone?

  Gone? In a grander form they rise.
    Dead? We may clasp their hands in ours,
  And catch the light of their clearer eyes,
    And wreathe their brows with immortal flowers.
  Wherever a noble deed is done,
    'Tis the pulse of a hero's heart is stirred;
  Wherever Right has a triumph won,
    There are the heroes' voices heard.
  Their armor rings on a fairer field
    Than the Greek and the Trojan fiercely trod;
  For Freedom's sword is the blade they wield,
    And the gleam above is the smile of God.
  So, in his isle of calm delight,
    Jason may sleep the years away;
  For the heroes live, and the sky is bright,
    And the world is a braver world to-day.


* * * * *


[On hearing the bells ring on the passage of the Constitutional
Amendment abolishing slavery.]

        It is done!
    Clang of bell and roar of gun
  Send the tidings up and down.
    How the belfries rock and reel!
    How the great guns, peal on peal,
  Fling the joy from town to town!

        Ring, O bells!
    Every stroke exulting tells
  Of the burial hour of crime.
    Loud and long, that all may hear,
    Ring for every listening ear
  Of Eternity and Time!

        Let us kneel:
    God's own voice is in that peal,
  And this spot is holy ground.
    Lord, forgive us! What are we,
    That our eyes this glory see,
  That our ears have heard the sound!

        For the Lord
    On the whirlwind is abroad;
  In the earthquake he has spoken;
    He has smitten with his thunder
    The iron walls asunder,
  And the gates of brass are broken!

        Loud and long
    Lift the old exulting song;
  Sing with Miriam by the sea:
    He has cast the mighty down;
    Horse and rider sink and drown;
  He has triumphed gloriously!

        Did we dare,
    In our agony of prayer,
  Ask for more than He has done?
    When was ever his right hand
    Over any time or land
  Stretched as now beneath the sun?

        How they pale,
    Ancient myth and song and tale,
  In this wonder of our days,
    When the cruel rod of war
    Blossoms white with righteous law,
  And the wrath of man is praise!

        Blotted out!
    All within and all about
  Shall a fresher life begin;
    Freer breathe the universe
    As it rolls its heavy curse
  On the dead and buried sin.

        It is done!
    In the circuit of the sun
  Shall the sound thereof go forth.
    It shall bid the sad rejoice,
    It shall give the dumb a voice,
  It shall belt with joy the earth!

        Ring and swing,
    Bells of joy! On morning's wing
  Send the song of praise abroad!
    With a sound of broken chains,
    Tell the nations that He reigns,
  Who alone is Lord and God!


* * * * *


  Let Liberty run onward with the years,
  And circle with the seasons; let her break
  The tyrant's harshness, the oppressor's spears;
  Bring ripened recompenses that shall make
  Supreme amends for sorrow's long arrears;
  Drop holy benison on hearts that ache;
  Put clearer radiance into human eyes,
  And set the glad earth singing to the skies.

  Clean natures coin pure statutes. Let us cleanse
  The hearts that beat within us; let us mow
  Clear to the roots our falseness and pretence,
  Tread down our rank ambitions, overthrow
  Our braggart moods of puffed self-consequence,
  Plough up our hideous thistles which do grow
  Faster than maize in May time, and strike dead
  The base infections our low greeds have bred.


* * * * *


* * * * *



                      Now went forth the morn,
  Such as in highest heaven, arrayed in gold
  Empyreal; from before her vanished night,
  Shot through with orient beams; when all the plain
  Covered with thick embattled squadrons bright,
  Chariots, and flaming arms, and fiery steeds,
  Reflecting blaze on blaze, first met his view.

* * * * *

  The apostate in his sun-bright chariot sat,
  Idol of majesty divine, enclosed
  With flaming cherubim, and golden shields;
  Then lighted from his gorgeous throne, for now
  'Twixt host and host but narrow space was left,
  A dreadful interval, and front to front
  Presented stood in terrible array
  Of hideous length: before the cloudy van,
  On the rough edge of battle ere it joined,
  Satan, with vast and haughty strides advanced,
  Came towering, armed in adamant and gold.


                    Michael bid sound
  The archangel trumpet; through the vast of heaven
  It sounded, and the faithful armies rung
  Hosanna to the Highest: nor stood at gaze
  The adverse legions, nor less hideous joined
  The horrid shock. Now storming fury rose,
  And clamor, such as heard in heaven till now
  Was never; arms on armor clashing brayed
  Horrible discord, and the madding wheels
  Of brazen chariots raged; dire was the noise
  Of conflict; overhead the dismal hiss
  Of fiery darts in flaming volleys flew,
  And flying vaulted either host with fire.
  So under fiery cope together rushed
  Both battles main, with ruinous assault
  And inextinguishable rage. All heaven
  Resounded; and had earth been then, all earth
  Had to her centre shook.

* * * * *

                      Deeds of eternal fame
  Were done, but infinite: for wide was spread
  That war, and various: sometimes on firm ground
  A standing fight, then, soaring on main wing,
  Tormented all the air; all air seemed then
  Conflicting fire.

* * * * *

  Forthwith (behold the excellence, the power
  Which God hath in his mighty angels placed!)
  Their arms away threw, and to the hills
  (For earth hath this variety from heaven,
  Of pleasures situate in hill and dale),
  Light as the lightning glimpse they ran, they flew,
  From their foundations loosening to and fro,
  They plucked the seated hills, with all their load,
  Rocks, waters, woods, and by the shaggy tops
  Uplifting bore them in their hands: amaze,
  Be sure, and terror, seized the rebel host,
  When coming towards them so dread they saw
  The bottom of the mountains upward turned,
   . . . . and on their heads
  Main promontories flung, which in the air
  Came shadowing, and oppressed whole legions armed;
  Their armor helped their harm, crushed in and bruised
  Into their substance pent, which wrought them pain
  Implacable, and many a dolorous groan;
  Long struggling underneath, ere they could wind
  Out of such prison, though spirits of purest light,
  Purest at first, now gross by sinning grown.
  The rest, in imitation, to like arms
  Betook them, and the neighboring hills uptore:
  So hills amid the air encountered hills,
  Hurled to and fro with jaculation dire,
  That underground they fought in dismal shade;
  Infernal noise! war seemed a civil game
  To this uproar; horrid confusion heaped
  Upon confusion rose.


  So spake the Son, and into terror changed
  His countenance too severe to be beheld,
  And full of wrath bent on his enemies.
  At once the four spread out their starry wings
  With dreadful shade contiguous, and the orbs
  Of his fierce chariot rolled, as with the sound
  Of torrent floods, or of a numerous host.
  He on his impious foes right onward drove,
  Gloomy as night: under his burning wheels
  The steadfast empyrean shook throughout.
  All but the throne itself of God. Full soon
  Among them he arrived; in his right hand
  Grasping ten thousand thunders, which he sent
  Before him, such as in their souls infixèd
  Plagues: they, astonished, all resistance lost,
  All courage; down their idle weapons dropt;
  O'er shields, and helms, and helmèd heads he rode
  Of thrones and mighty seraphim prostráte,
  That wished the mountains now might be again
  Thrown on them, as a shelter from his ire.
  Nor less on either side tempestuous fell
  His arrows, from the fourfold-visaged Four
  Distinct with eyes, and from the living wheels
  Distinct alike with multitude of eyes;
  One spirit in them ruled; and every eye
  Glared lightning, and shot forth pernicious fire
  Among the accursed, that withered all their strength,
  And of their wonted vigor left them drained,
  Exhausted, spiritless, afflicted, fallen.
  Yet half his strength he put not forth, but checked
  His thunder in mid volley; for he meant
  Not to destroy, but root them out of heaven:
  The overthrown he raised, and as a herd
  Of goats or timorous flock together thronged,
  Drove them before him thunderstruck, pursued
  With terrors and with furies, to the bounds
  And crystal wall of heaven; which, opening wide,
  Rolled inward, and a spacious gap disclosed
  Into the wasteful deep: the monstrous sight
  Struck them with horror backward, but far worse
  Urged them behind: headlong themselves they threw
  Down from the verge of heaven; eternal wrath
  Burnt after them to the bottomless pit.


* * * * *



  The Assyrian came down like the wolf on the fold,
  And his cohorts were gleaming in purple and gold;
  And the sheen of their spears was like stars on the sea,
  When the blue wave rolls nightly on deep Galilee.

  Like the leaves of the forest when summer is green,
  That host with their banners at sunset were seen:
  Like the leaves of the forest when autumn hath blown,
  That host on the morrow lay withered and strown.

  For the Angel of Death spread his wings on the blast,
  And breathed in the face of the foe as he passed;
  And the eyes of the sleepers waxed deadly and chill,
  And their hearts but once heaved, and forever grew still!

  And there lay the steed with his nostril all wide,
  But through it there rolled not the breath of his pride:
  And the foam of his gasping lay white on the turf,
  And cold as the spray of the rock-beating surf.

  And there lay the rider distorted and pale.
  With the dew on his brow, and the rust on his mail;
  And the tents were all silent, the banners alone,
  The lances unlifted, the trumpet unblown.

  And the widows of Ashur are loud in their wail,
  And the idols are broke in the temple of Baal;
  And the might of the Gentile, unsmote by the sword,
  Hath melted like snow in the glance of the Lord!


* * * * *



  TAMBURLAINE.—But now, my boys, leave off and list to me,
  That mean to teach you rudiments of war:
  I'll have you learn to sleep upon the ground,
  March in your armor through watery fens,
  Sustain the scorching heat and freezing cold,
  Hunger and thirst, right adjuncts of the war,
  And after this to scale a castle wall,
  Besiege a fort, to undermine a town,
  And make whole cities caper in the air.
  Then next the way to fortify your men:
  In champion grounds, what figure serves you best,
  For which the quinque-angle form is meet,
  Because the corners there may fall more flat
  Whereas the fort may fittest be assailed,
  And sharpest where the assault is desperate.
  The ditches must be deep; the counterscarps
  Narrow and steep; the walls made high and broad;
  The bulwarks and the rampires large and strong,
  With cavalieros and thick counterforts,
  And room within to lodge six thousand men.
  It must have privy ditches, countermines,
  And secret issuings to defend the ditch;
  It must have high argins and covered ways,
  To keep the bulwark fronts from battery,
  And parapets to hide the musketers;
  Casemates to place the great artillery;
  And store of ordnance, that from every flank
  May scour the outward curtains of the fort,
  Dismount the cannon of the adverse part,
  Murder the foe, and save the walls from breach.
  When this is learned for service on the land,
  By plain and easy demonstration
  I'll teach you how to make the water mount,
  That you may dry-foot march through lakes and pools,
  Deep rivers, havens, creeks, and little seas,
  And make a fortress in the raging waves,
  Fenced with the concave of monstrous rock,
  Invincible by nature of the place.
  When this is done then are ye soldiers,
  And worthy sons of Tamburlaine the Great.

  CALYPHAS.—My lord, but this is dangerous to be done:
  We may be slain or wounded ere we learn.

  TAMBURLAINE.—Villain! Art thou the son of Tamburlaine,
  And fear'st to die, or with a curtle-axe
  To hew thy flesh, and make a gaping wound?
  Hast thou beheld a peal of ordnance strike
  A ring of pikes, mingled with shot and horse,
  Whose shattered limbs, being tossed as high as Heaven,
  Hang in the air as thick as sunny motes,
  And canst thou, coward, stand in fear of death?
  Hast thou not seen my horsemen charge the foe,
  Shot through the arms, cut overthwart the hands,
  Dyeing their lances with their streaming blood,
  And yet at night carouse within my tent,
  Filling their empty veins with airy wine,
  That, being concocted, turns to crimson blood.—
  And wilt thou shun the field for fear of wounds?
  View me, thy father, that hath conquered kings,
  And with his horse marched round about the earth
  Quite void of scars and clear from any wound,
  That by the wars lost not a drop of blood,—
  And see him lance his flesh to teach you all.
            (He cuts his arm.)
  A wound is nothing, be it ne'er so deep;
  Blood is the god of war's rich livery,
  Now look I like a soldier, and this wound
  As great a grace and majesty to me,
  As if a chain of gold, enamellèd,
  Enchased with diamonds, sapphires, rubies,
  And fairest pearl of wealthy India,
  Were mounted here under a canopy,
  And I sate down clothed with a massy robe,
  That late adorned the Afric potentate,
  Whom I brought bound unto Damascus' walls.
  Come, boys, and with your fingers search my wound,
  And in my blood wash all your hands at once,
  While I sit smiling to behold the sight.
  Now, my boys, what think ye of a wound?

  CALYPHAS.—I know not what I should think of it; methinks it is a
          pitiful sight.

CELEBINUS.—'Tis nothing: give me a wound, father.

AMYRAS.—And me another, my lord.

TAMBURLAINE.—Come, sirrah, give me your arm.

CELEBINUS.—Here, father, cut it bravely, as you did your own.

  TAMBURLAINE.—It shall suffice thou darest abide a wound:
  My boy, thou shalt not lose a drop of blood
  Before we meet the army of the Turk;
  But then run desperate through the thickest throngs,
  Dreadless of blows, of bloody wounds, and death;
  And let the burning of Larissa-walls,
  My speech of war, and this my wound you see,
  Teach you, my boys, to bear courageous minds,
  Fit for the followers of great Tamburlaine!


* * * * *



  Sound all to arms! (A flourish of trumpets.)
  Call in the captains,— (To an officer)
                         I would speak with them!

(The officer goes.)

  Now, Hope! away,—and welcome gallant Death!
  Welcome the clanging shield, the trumpet's yell,—
  Welcome the fever of the mounting blood,
  That makes wounds light, and battle's crimson toil
  Seem but a sport,—and welcome the cold bed,
  Where soldiers with their upturned faces lie,—
  And welcome wolf's and vulture's hungry throats,
  That make their sepulchres! We fight to-night.

(The soldiery enter.)

  Centurions! all is ruined! I disdain
  To hide the truth from you. The die is thrown!
  And now, let each that wishes for long life
  Put up his sword, and kneel for peace to Rome.
  Ye all are free to go. What! no man stirs!
  Not one! a soldier's spirit in you all?
  Give me your hands! (This moisture in my eyes
  Is womanish,—'twill pass.) My noble hearts!
  Well have you chosen to die! For, in my mind,
  The grave is better than o'erburdened life;
  Better the quick release of glorious wounds,
  Than the eternal taunts of galling tongues;
  Better the spear-head quivering in the heart,
  Than daily struggle against fortune's curse;
  Better, in manhood's muscle and high blood,
  To leap the gulf, than totter to its edge
  In poverty, dull pain, and base decay.
  Once more, I say,—are ye resolved?

(The soldiers shout, "All! All!")

  Then, each man to his tent, and take the arms
  That he would love to die in,—for, this hour,
  We storm the Consul's camp. A last farewell!

(He takes their hands.)

  When next we meet,—we'll have no time to look,
  How parting clouds a soldier's countenance.
  Few as we are, we'll rouse them with a peal
  That shall shake Rome!
  Now to your cohorts' heads;—the word's—Revenge!


* * * * *


  Before proud Rome's imperial throne
    In mind's unconquered mood,
  As if the triumph were his own,
    The dauntless captive stood.
  None, to have seen his free-born air,
  Had fancied him a captive there.

  Though, through the crowded streets of Rome,
    With slow and stately tread,
  Far from his own loved island home,
    That day in triumph led,—
  Unbound his head, unbent his knee,
  Undimmed his eye, his aspect free.

  A free and fearless glance he cast
    On temple, arch, and tower,
  By which the long procession passed
    Of Rome's victorious power;
  And somewhat of a scornful smile
    Upcurled his haughty lip the while.

  And now he stood, with brow serene,
    Where slaves might prostrate fall,
  Bearing a Briton's manly mien
    In Cæsar's palace hall;
  Claiming, with kindled brow and cheek,
  The liberty e'en there to speak.

  Nor could Rome's haughty lord withstand
    The claim that look preferred,
  But motioned with uplifted hand
    The suppliant should be heard,—
  If he indeed a suppliant were
  Whose glance demanded audience there.

  Deep stillness fell on all the crowd,
    From Claudius on his throne
  Down to the meanest slave that bowed
    At his imperial throne;
  Silent his fellow-captive's grief
  As fearless spoke the Island Chief:

  "Think not, thou eagle Lord of Rome,
    And master of the world,
  Though victory's banner o'er thy dome
    In triumph now is furled,
  I would address thee as thy slave,
  But as the bold should greet the brave!

  "I might, perchance, could I have deigned
    To hold a vassal's throne,
  E'en now in Britain's isle have reigned
    A king in name alone,
  Yet holding, as thy meek ally,
  A monarch's mimic pageantry.

  "Then through Rome's crowded streets to-day
    I might have rode with thee,
  Not in a captive's base array,
    But fetterless and free,—
  If freedom he could hope to find,
  Whose bondage is of heart and mind.

  "But canst thou marvel that, freeborn,
    With heart and soul unquelled,
  Throne, crown, and sceptre I should scorn,
    By thy permission held?
  Or that I should retain my right
  Till wrested by a conqueror's might?

  "Rome, with her palaces and towers,
    By us unwished, unreft,
  Her homely huts and woodland bowers
    To Britain might have left;
  Worthless to you their wealth must be,
  But dear to us, for they were free!

  "I might have bowed before, but where
    Had been thy triumph now?
  To my resolve no yoke to bear
    Thou ow'st thy laurelled brow;
  Inglorious victory had been thine,
  And more inglorious bondage mine.

  "Now I have spoken, do thy will;
    Be life or death my lot,
  Since Britain's throne no more I fill,
    To me it matters not.
  My fame is clear; but on my fate
  Thy glory or thy shame must wait."

  He ceased; from all around upsprung
    A murmur of applause,
  For well had truth and freedom's tongue
    Maintained their holy cause.
  The conqueror was the captive then;
  He bade the slave be free again.


* * * * *



    My voice is still for war.
  Gods! can a Roman senate long debate
  Which of the two to choose, slavery or death?
  No; let us rise at once, gird on our swords,
  And at the head of our remaining troops
  Attack the foe, break through the thick array
  Of his thronged legions, and charge home upon him.
  Perhaps some arm, more lucky than the rest,
  May reach his heart, and free the world from bondage.
  Rise! Fathers, rise! 'tis Rome demands your help:
  Rise, and revenge her slaughtered citizens,
  Or share their fate! The corpse of half her senate
  Manures the fields of Thessaly, while we
  Sit here deliberating, in cold debate,
  If we should sacrifice our lives to honor,
  Or wear them out in servitude and chains.
  Rouse up, for shame! our brothers of Pharsalia
  Point at their wounds, and cry aloud,—"To battle!"
  Great Pompey's shade complains that we are slow,
  And Scipio's ghost walks unrevenged amongst us.


* * * * *


  It was the wild midnight,—
    A storm was on the sky;
  The lightning gave its light,
    And the thunder echoed by.

  The torrent swept the glen,
    The ocean lashed the shore;
  Then rose the Spartan men,
    To make their bed in gore!

  Swift from the deluge ground
    Three hundred took the shield;
  Then, silent, gathered round
    The leader of the field!

  He spake no warrior word,
    He bade no trumpet blow,
  But the signal thunder roared,
    And they rushed upon the foe.

  The fiery element
    Showed, with one mighty gleam,
  Rampart, and flag, and tent,
    Like the spectres of a dream.

  All up the mountain's side,
    All down the woody vale,
  All by the rolling tide
    Waved the Persian banners pale.

  And foremost from the pass,
    Among the slumbering band,
  Sprang King Leonidas,
    Like the lightning's living brand.

  Then double darkness fell,
    And the forest ceased its moan;
  But there came a clash of steel,
    And a distant dying groan.

  Anon, a trumpet blew,
    And a fiery sheet burst high,
  That o'er the midnight threw
    A blood-red canopy.

  A host glared on the hill;
    A host glared by the bay;
  But the Greeks rushed onward still,
    Like leopards in their play.

  The air was all a yell,
    And the earth was all a flame,
  Where the Spartan's bloody steel
    On the silken turbans came;

  And still the Greek rushed on
    Where the fiery torrent rolled,
  Till like a rising sun
    Shone Xerxes' tent of gold.

  They found a royal feast,
    His midnight banquet, there;
  And the treasures of the East
    Lay beneath the Doric spear.

  Then sat to the repast
    The bravest of the brave!
  That feast must be their last,
    That spot must be their grave.

  They pledged old Sparta's name
    In cups of Syrian wine,
  And the warrior's deathless fame
    Was sung in strains divine.

  They took the rose-wreathed lyres
    From eunuch and from slave,
  And taught the languid wires,
    The sounds that Freedom gave.

  But now the morning star
    Crowned Oeta's twilight brow;
  And the Persian horn of war
    From the hills began to blow.

  Up rose the glorious rank,
    To Greece one cup poured high,
  Then hand in hand they drank,
    "To immortality!"

  Fear on King Xerxes fell,
    When, like spirits from the tomb,
  With shout and trumpet knell,
    He saw the warriors come.

  But down swept all his power,
    With chariot and with charge;
  Down poured the arrows' shower.
    Till sank the Dorian's targe.

  They gathered round the tent,
    With all their strength unstrung;
  To Greece one look they sent,
    Then on high their torches flung.

  The king sat on the throne,
    His captains by his side,
  While the flame rushed roaring on,
    And their Paean loud replied.

  Thus fought the Greek of old!
    Thus will he fight again!
  Shall not the self-same mould
    Bring forth the self-same men?


* * * * *



    Again to the battle, Achaians!
    Our hearts bid the tyrants defiance;
  Our land,—the first garden of Liberty's-tree,—
  Has been, and shall yet be, the land of the free;
    For the cross of our faith is replanted,
    The pale dying crescent is daunted,
  And we march that the footprints of Mahomet's slaves
  May be washed out in blood from our forefathers' graves.
    Their spirits are hovering o'er us,
    And the sword shall to glory restore us.

    Ah! what though no succor advances,
    Nor Christendom's chivalrous lances
  Are stretched in our aid?—Be the combat our own!
  And we'll perish or conquer more proudly alone;
    For we've sworn by our country's assaulters,
    By the virgins they've dragged from our altars,
  By our massacred patriots, our children in chains,
  By our heroes of old, and their blood in our veins,
    That, living, we will be victorious,
    Or that, dying, our deaths shall be glorious.

    A breath of submission we breathe not:
    The sword that we've drawn we will sheathe not:
  Its scabbard is left where our martyrs are laid,
  And the vengeance of ages has whetted its blade.
    Earth may hide, waves engulf, fire consume us;
    But they shall not to slavery doom us:
  If they rule, it shall be o'er our ashes and graves:—
  But we've smote them already with fire on the waves.
    And new triumphs on land are before us;—
    To the charge!—Heaven's banner is o'er us.

    This day—shall ye blush for its story;
    Or brighten your lives with its glory?—
  Our women—oh, say, shall they shriek in despair,
  Or embrace us from conquest, with wreaths in their hair?
    Accursed may his memory blacken,
    If a coward there be that would slacken
  Till we've trampled the turban, and shown ourselves worth
  Being sprung from and named for, the godlike of earth.
    Strike home!—and the world shall revere us
    As heroes descended from heroes.

    Old Greece lightens up with emotion!
    Her inlands, her isles of the ocean,
  Fanes rebuilt, and fair towns, shall with jubilee ring,
  And the Nine shall new hallow their Helicon's spring.
    Our hearts shall be kindled in gladness,
    That were cold, and extinguished in sadness;
  Whilst our maidens shall dance with their white waving arms,
  Singing joy to the brave that delivered their charms,—
    When the blood of yon Mussulman cravens
    Shall have crimsoned the beaks of our ravens!


* * * * *



  At midnight, in his guarded tent,
    The Turk was dreaming of the hour
  When Greece, her knee in suppliance bent,
    Should tremble at his power.
  In dreams, through camp and court, he bore
  The trophies of a conqueror;
    In dreams his song of triumph heard;
  Then wore his monarch's signet-ring,
  Then pressed that monarch's throne—a king;
  As wild his thoughts, and gay of wing,
    As Eden's garden bird.

  At midnight, in the forest shades,
    Bozzaris ranged his Suliote band,—
  True as the steel of their tried blades,
    Heroes in heart and hand.
  There had the Persian's thousands stood,
  There had the glad earth drunk their blood,
    On old Plataea's day;
  And now there breathed that haunted air
  The sons of sires who conquered there,
  With arm to strike, and soul to dare,
    As quick, as far, as they.

  An hour passed on, the Turk awoke:
    That bright dream was his last;
  He woke—to hear his sentries shriek,
    "To arms! they come! the Greek! the Greek!"
  He woke—to die midst flame, and smoke,
  And shout, and groan, and sabre-stroke,
    And death-shots falling thick and fast
  As lightnings from the mountain-cloud;
  And heard, with voice as trumpet loud,
    Bozzaris cheer his band:
  "Strike—till the last armed foe expires;
  Strike—for your altars and your fires;
  Strike—for the green graves of your sires,
    God, and your native land!"

  They fought—like brave men, long and well;
    They piled that ground with Moslem slain:
  They conquered—but Bozzaris fell,
    Bleeding at every vein.
  His few surviving comrades saw
  His smile when rang their proud hurrah,
    And the red field was won;
  Then saw in death his eyelids close
  Calmly, as to a night's repose,
    Like flowers at set of sun.

  Come to the bridal chamber, Death,
    Come to the mother, when she feels,
  For the first time, her first-born's breath;
    Come when the blessèd seals
  That close the pestilence are broke,
  And crowded cities wail its stroke;
  Come in consumption's ghastly form,
  The earthquake shock, the ocean storm;
  Come when the heart beats high and warm,
    With banquet song and dance and wine,—
  And thou art terrible; the tear,
  The groan, the knell, the pall, the bier,
  And all we know, or dream, or fear
    Of agony, are thine.

  But to the hero, when his sword
    Has won the battle for the free,
  Thy voice sounds like a prophet's word,
  And in its hollow tones are heard
    The thanks of millions yet to be.
  Come when his task of fame is wrought;
  Come with her laurel-leaf, blood-bought;
    Come in her crowning hour,—and then
  Thy sunken eye's unearthly light
  To him is welcome as the sight
    Of sky and stars to prisoned men;
  Thy grasp is welcome as the hand
  Of brother in a foreign land;
  Thy summons welcome as the cry
  That told the Indian isles were nigh
    To the world-seeking Genoese,
  When the land-wind, from woods of palm,
  And orange-groves, and fields of balm,
    Blew o'er the Haytian seas.

  Bozzaris! with the storied brave
    Greece nurtured in her glory's time,
  Rest thee; there is no prouder grave,
    Even in her own proud clime.
  She wore no funeral weeds for thee,
    Nor bade the dark hearse wave its plume,
  Like torn branch from death's leafless tree,
  In sorrow's pomp and pageantry,
    The heartless luxury of the tomb.
  But she remembers thee as one
  Long loved, and for a season gone.
  For thee her poet's lyre is wreathed,
  Her marble wrought, her music breathed;
  For thee she rings the birthday bells;
  Of thee her babes' first lisping tells;
  For thine her evening prayer is said
  At palace couch and cottage bed.
  Her soldier, closing with the foe,
  Gives for thy sake a deadlier blow;
  His plighted maiden, when she fears
  For him, the joy of her young years,
  Thinks of thy fate, and checks her tears.
    And she, the mother of thy boys,
  Though in her eye and faded cheek
  Is read the grief she will not speak,
    The memory of her buried joys,—
  And even she who gave thee birth,—
  Will, by her pilgrim-circled hearth,
    Talk of thy doom without a sigh;
  For thou art freedom's now, and fame's,—
  One of the few, the immortal names
    That were not born to die.


* * * * *


  Now the third and fatal conflict for the Persian throne was done,
  And the Moslem's fiery valor had the crowning victory won.

  Harmosan, the last and boldest the invader to defy,
  Captive, overborn by numbers, they were bringing forth to die.

  Then exclaimed that noble captive: "Lo, I perish in my thirst;
  Give me but one drink of water, and let then arrive the worst!"

  In his hand he took the goblet: but awhile the draught forbore,
  Seeming doubtfully the purpose of the foeman to explore.

  Well might then have paused the bravest—for, around him, angry foes
  With a hedge of naked weapons did the lonely man enclose.

  "But what fear'st thou?" cried the caliph; "is it, friend, a secret blow?
  Fear it not! our gallant Moslems no such treacherous dealing know.

  "Thou may'st quench thy thirst securely, for thou shalt not die before
  Thou hast drunk that cup of water—this reprieve is thine—no more!"

  Quick the satrap dashed the goblet down to earth with ready hand,
  And the liquid sank forever, lost amid the burning sand.

  "Thou hast said that mine my life is, till the water of that cup
  I have drained; then bid thy servants that spilled water gather up!"

  For a moment stood the caliph as by doubtful passions stirred—
  Then exclaimed: "For ever sacred must remain a monarch's word.
  Bring another cup, and straightway to the noble Persian give:
  Drink, I said before, and perish—now I bid thee drink and live!"


* * * * *



  Then cried my Cid—"In charity, as to the rescue—ho!"
  With bucklers braced before their breasts, with lances pointing low,
  With stooping crests and heads bent down above the saddle-bow,
  All firm of hand and high of heart they roll upon the foe.
  And he that in a good hour was born, his clarion voice rings out,
  And clear above the clang of arms is heard his battle shout:
  "Among them, gentlemen! Strike home for the love of charity!
  The champion of Bivar is here—Ruy Diaz—I am he!"
  Then bearing where Bermuez still maintains unequal fight,
  Three hundred lances down they come, their pennons flickering white;
  Down go three hundred Moors to earth, a man to every blow;
  And when they wheel, three hundred more, as charging back they go.
  It was a sight to see the lances rise and fall that day;
  The shivered shields and riven mail, to see how thick they lay;
  The pennons that went in snow-white came out a gory red;
  The horses running riderless, the riders lying dead;
  While Moors call on Mohammed, and "St. James!" the Christians cry,
  And sixty score of Moors and more in narrow compass lie.

From the Spanish.
Translation of JOHN ORMSBY.

* * * * *


  "Your horse is faint, my King, my Lord! your gallant horse is sick,—
  His limbs are torn, his breast is gored, on his eye the film is thick;
  Mount, mount on mine, O mount apace, I pray thee, mount and fly!
  Or in my arms I'll lift your Grace,—their trampling hoofs are nigh!

  "My King, my King,! you're wounded sore,—the blood runs from your feet;
  But only lay a hand before, and I'll lift you to your seat;
  Mount, Juan, for they gather fast!—I hear their coming cry,—
  Mount, mount, and ride for jeopardy,—I'll save you though I die!

  "Stand, noble steed! this hour of need,—be gentle as a lamb;
  I'll kiss the foam from off thy mouth,—thy master dear I am,—
  Mount, Juan, mount; whate'er betide, away the bridle fling,
  And plunge the rowels in his side.—My horse shall save my King!

  "Nay, never speak; my sires, Lord King, received their land from yours,
  And joyfully their blood shall spring, so be it thine secures;
  If I should fly, and thou, my King, be found among the dead,
  How could I stand 'mong gentlemen, such scorn on my gray head?

  "Castile's proud dames shall never point the finger of disdain,
  And say there's one that ran away when our good lords were slain!
  I leave Diego in your care,—you'll fill his father's place;
  Strike, strike the spur, and never spare—God's blessing on your Grace!"

  So spake the brave Montañez, Butrago's lord was he;
  And turned him to the coming host in steadfastness and glee;
  He flung himself among them, as they came down the hill,—
  He died, God wot! but not before his sword had drunk its fill.

From the Spanish.

* * * * *



[Olaf Trygvesön from Ireland is trying to introduce Christianity, and reclaim his father's kingdom, in Norway, and has invaded the realm of Earl Hakon, a formidable heathen usurper, who, after defeat in battle, unsuccessfully attempts to have King Olaf assassinated by Thorer Klake, one of his adherents. But Olaf slays Klake, and now visits Hakon, lying hid in a peasant's hut.]

Enter OLAF TRYGVESÖN, muffled up in a gray cloak, with a broad hat on his head.

  HAKON [without looking up].—
  My valiant Thorer Klake, hast come at last?
  Hast been successful? Dost thou bring to me
  What thou didst promise? Answer, Thorer Klake.

  OLAF.—All things have happened as they should, my lord;
  But pardon Thorer that he does not come
  And bring himself King Olaf's head to thee—
  'Twas difficult for him. Thor knows he had
  A sort of loathing that himself should bring it,
  And so he sent me.

  HAKON.—Well, 'tis good; away,
  And deeply bury it in the dark earth.
  I will not look on it myself: my eye
  Bears not such sights,—they reappear in dreams.
  Bury the body with it. Tell thy lord
  That he shall come at once.

OLAF.—He is asleep.


  OLAF.—A midday slumber; he lies stretched
  Stiffly beneath a shadowy elder-tree.

  HAKON.—Then wake him up. [Aside.] Asleep, Asleep, and after such
  A deed—Ha! Thorer, I admire thee;
  Thou hast rare courage. [Aloud.] Thrall, go wake him up.

OLAF.—But wilt thou first not look at Olaf's head?

HAKON.—No; I have said no.

  OLAF.—Thou dost think, my lord,
  That perhaps it is a horrid frightful sight:
  It is not so, my lord; for Olaf's head
  Looks fresh and sound as any in the land.

HAKON.—Away, I tell thee!

  OLAF.—I ne'er saw the like:
  I always heard that Hakon was a hero,
  Few like him in the North,—and does he fear
  To see a lifeless and a corpseless head?
  How wouldst thou tremble then, my lord, if thou
  Shouldst see it on his body?

  HAKON [turning round angrily].—
  Thrall, thou darest!
  Where hast thou got it?

  OLAF [takes his hat off, and throws off his cloak].—
  On my shoulders, Earl.
  Forgive me that I bring it thee myself
  In such a way: 'twas easiest for me.

HAKON.—What, Olaf! Ha! what treachery is here?

  OLAF.—Old gray-beard, spare thy rash, heroic wrath.
  Attempt not to fight Olaf, but remember
  That he has still his head upon his body,
  And that thy impotent, gray-bearded strength
  Was only fitting for the headless Olaf.

  HAKON [rushes at him].—
  Ha, Hilfheim!

  OLAF [strikes his sword, and says in a loud voice].—
  So, be quiet now, I say,
  And sheathe thy sword again. My followers
  Surround the house; my vessels are a match
  For all of thine, and I myself have come
  To win the country in an honest fight.
  Thyself hast urged me with thy plots to do it.
  Thou standest like a despicable thrall
  In his own pitfall caught at last; but I
  Will make no use of these advantages
  Which fate has granted me. I am convinced
  That I may boldly meet thee face to face.
  Thy purpose, as thou seest, has wholly failed,
  And in his own blood does thy Thorer swim.
  Thou seest 'twere easy for me to have seized thee;
  To strike thee down were even easier still:
  But I the Christian doctrine do confess,
  And do such poor advantages despise.
  So choose between two courses. Still be Earl
  Of Hlade as thou wast, and do me homage,
  Or else take flight; for when we meet again
  'Twill be the time for red and bleeding brows.

  HAKON [proudly and quietly].—
  My choice is made. I choose the latter, Olaf.
  Thou callest me a villain and a thrall;
  That forces up a smile upon my lips.
  Olaf, one hears indeed that thou art young;
  It is by mockery and arrogance
  That one can judge thy age. Now, look at me
  Full in the eyes; consider well my brow:
  Hast thou among the thralls e'er met such looks?
  Dost think that cunning or that cowardice
  Could e'er have carved these wrinkles on my brow?
  I did entice thee hither. Ha! 'tis true
  I knew that thou didst wait but for a sign
  To flutter after the enticing bait;
  That in thy soul thou didst more highly prize
  Thy kinship with an extinct race of kings
  Than great Earl Hakon's world-renownèd deeds;
  That thou didst watch the opportunity
  To fall upon the old man in his rest.
  Does it astonish thee that I should wish
  Quickly to rid myself of such a foe?
  That I deceived a dreamer who despised
  The mighty gods,—does that astonish thee?
  Does it astonish thee that I approved
  My warrior's purpose, since a hostile fate
  Attempted to dethrone, not only me,
  But all Valhalla's gods?

  OLAF.—Remember, Hakon,—
  Remember, Hakon, that e'en thou thyself
  Hast been a Christian; that thou wast baptized
  By Bishop Popo, and that thou since then
  Didst break thy oath. How many hast thou broken?

  HAKON.—Accursed forever may that moment be
  When by the cunning monk I was deceived,
  And let myself be fooled by paltry tricks.
  He held a red-hot iron in his hand,
  After by magic he had covered it
  With witches' ointment.

  OLAF.—O thou blind old man!
  Thy silver hair does make me pity thee.

  HAKON.—Ha! spare thy pity; as thou seest me here,
  Thou seest the last flash and the latest spark
  Of ancient Northern force and hero's life;
  And that, with all thy fever-stricken dreams,
  Proud youth, thou shalt be powerless to quench.
  I well do know it is the Christian custom
  To pity, to convert, and to amend.
  Our custom is to heartily despise you,
  To ruminate upon your fall and death,
  As foes to gods and to a hero's life.
  That Hakon does, and therein does consist
  His villainy. By Odin, and by Thor,
  Thou shalt not quench old Norway's warlike flame
  With all thy misty dreams of piety.

  OLAF.—'Tis well: fate shall decide. We separate,
  And woe to thee when next we meet again.

HAKON.—Aye, woe to me if then I crush thee not.

OLAF.—Heaven shall strike thee with its fiery might!

HAKON.—No, with his hammer Thor the cross will smite!

Translation of SIR FRANK C. LASCELLES.

* * * * *



  Lie still, old Dane, below thy heap!
    A sturdy-back and sturdy-limb,
    Whoe'er he was, I warrant him
  Upon whose mound the single sheep
    Browses and tinkles in the sun,
    Within the narrow vale alone.

  Lie still, old Dane! This restful scene
    Suits well thy centuries of sleep:
    The soft brown roots above thee creep,
  The lotus flaunts his ruddy sheen,
    And,—vain memento of the spot,—The
    turquoise-eyed forget-me-not.

  Lie still! Thy mother-land herself
    Would know thee not again: no more
    The Raven from the northern shore
  Hails the bold crew to push for pelf,
    Through fire and blood and slaughtered kings
    'Neath the black terror of his wings.

  And thou,—thy very name is lost!
    The peasant only knows that here
    Bold Alfred scooped thy flinty bier,
  And prayed a foeman's prayer, and tost
    His auburn head, and said, "One more
    Of England's foes guards England's shore,"

  And turned and passed to other feats,
    And left thee in thine iron robe,
    To circle with the circling globe,
  While Time's corrosive dewdrop eats
    The giant warrior to a crust
    Of earth in earth, and rust in rust.

  So lie: and let the children play
    And sit like flowers upon thy grave
    And crown with flowers,—that hardly have
  A briefer blooming-tide than they;—
    By hurrying years urged on to rest,
    As thou within the Mother's breast.


* * * * *


  Ha! there comes he, with sweat, with blood of Romans,
  And dust of the fight all stained! Oh, never
            Saw I Hermann so lovely!
            Never such fire in his eyes!

  Come! I tremble for joy; hand me the Eagle
  And the red dripping sword! come, breathe, and rest thee;
            Rest thee here in my bosom;
            Rest from the terrible fight!

  Rest thee, while from thy brow I wipe the big drops,
  And the blood from thy cheek!—that cheek, how glowing!
            Hermann! Hermann! Thusnelda
            Never so loved thee before!

  No, not then, when thou first in old oak shadows,
  With that manly brown arm didst wildly grasp me!
            Spell-bound I read in thy look
            That immortality then

  Which thou now hast won. Tell to the forests,
  Great Augustus, with trembling, amidst his gods now,
            Drinks his nectar; for Hermann,
            Hermann immortal is found!

  "Wherefore curl'st thou my hair? Lies not our father
  Cold and silent in death? Oh, had Augustus
            Only headed his army,—
            He should lie bloodier there!"

  Let me lift up thy hair; 'tis sinking, Hermann:
  Proudly thy locks should curl above the crown now!
            Sigmar is with the immortals!
            Follow, and mourn him no more!


* * * * *


  Fear not, O little flock! the foe
  Who madly seeks your overthrow,
      Dread not his rage and power;
  What though your courage sometimes faints?
  His seeming triumph o'er God's saints
      Lasts but a little hour.

  Be of good cheer; your cause belongs
  To him who can avenge your wrongs,
      Leave it to him, our Lord.
  Though hidden now from all our eyes,
  He sees the Gideon who shall rise
      To save us, and his word.

  As true as God's own word is true,
  Not earth or hell with all their crew
      Against us shall prevail.
  A jest and by-word are they grown;
  God is with us, we are his own,
      Our victory cannot fail.

  Amen, Lord Jesus; grant our prayer!
  Great Captain, now thine arm make bare;
      Fight for us once again!
  So shall the saints and martyrs raise
  A mighty chorus to thy praise,
      World without end! Amen.

From the German of MICHAEL ALTENBURG.

* * * * *


  Sword, on my left side gleaming,
  What means thy bright eye's beaming?
  It makes my spirit dance
  To see thy friendly glance.

  "A valiant rider bears me;
  A free-born German wears me:
  That makes my eye so bright;
  That is the sword's delight."

  Yes, good sword, I am free,
  And love thee heartily,
  And clasp thee to my side,
  E'en as the plighted bride.

  "And I to thee, by Heaven,
  My light steel life have given;
  When shall the knot be tied?
  When wilt thou take thy bride?"

  The trumpet's solemn warning
  Shall hail the bridal morning,
  When cannon-thunders wake,
  Then my true-love I take.

  "O blessèd, blessèd meeting!
  My heart is wildly beating:
  Come, bridegroom, come for me;
  My garland waiteth thee."

  Why in the scabbard rattle,
  So wild, so fierce for battle?
  What means this restless glow?
  My sword, why clatter so?

  "Well may thy prisoner rattle;
  My spirit yearns for battle.
  Rider, 'tis war's wild glow
  That makes me tremble so."

  Stay in thy chamber near,
  My love; what wilt thou here?
  Still in thy chamber bide;
  Soon, soon I take my bride.

  "Let me not longer wait:
  Love's garden blooms in state,
  With roses bloody-red,
  And many a bright death-bed."

  Now, then, come forth, my bride!
  Come forth, thou rider's pride!
  Come out, my good sword, come!
  Forth to thy father's home!

  "O, in the field to prance
  The glorious wedding dance!
  How, in the sun's bright beams,
  Bride-like the clear steel gleams!"

  Then forward, valiant fighters!
  And forward, German riders!
  And when the heart grows cold,
  Let each his love infold.

  Once on the left it hung,
  And stolen glances flung;
  Now clearly on your right
  Doth God each fond bride plight.

  Then let your hot lips feel
  That virgin cheek of steel;
  One kiss,—and woe betide
  Him who forsakes the bride.

  Now let the loved one sing;
  Now let the clear blade ring,
  Till the bright sparks shall fly,
  Heralds of victory!

  For, hark! the trumpet's warning
  Proclaims the marriage morning;
  It dawns in festal pride;
  Hurrah, thou Iron Bride!

From the German of KARL THEODOR KÖRNER.

* * * * *


  The weary night is o'er at last!
  We ride so still, we ride so fast!
    We ride where Death is lying.
  The morning wind doth coldly pass,
  Landlord! we'll take another glass,
        Ere dying.

  Thou, springing grass, that art so green,
  Shall soon be rosy red, I ween,
    My blood the hue supplying!
  I drink the first glass, sword in hand,
  To him who for the Fatherland
        Lies dying!

  Now quickly comes the second draught,
  And that shall be to freedom quaffed
    While freedom's foes are flying!
  The rest, O land, our hope and faith!
  We'd drink to thee with latest breath,
        Though dying!

  My darling!—ah, the glass is out!
  The bullets ring, the riders shout—
    No time for wine or sighing!
  There! bring my love the shattered glass—
  Charge! On the foe! no joys surpass
        Such dying!

From the German of GEORG HERWEGH.
Translation of ROSSITER W. RAYMOND.

* * * * *


  A soldier of the Legion lay dying in Algiers,
  There was lack of woman's nursing, there was dearth of woman's
  But a comrade stood beside him, while his life-blood ebbed away,
  And bent, with pitying glances, to hear what he might say.
  The dying soldier faltered, and he took that comrade's hand,
  And he said, "I nevermore shall see my own, my native land;
  Take a message, and a token, to some distant friends of mine,
  For I was born at Bingen,—at Bingen on the Rhine.

  "Tell my brothers and companions, when they meet and crowd around,
  To hear my mournful story, in that pleasant vineyard ground,
  That we fought the battle bravely, and when the day was done,
  Full many a corse lay ghastly pale beneath the setting sun;
  And, mid the dead and dying, were some grown old in wars,—
  The death-wound on their gallant breasts, the last of many scars;
  And some were young, and suddenly beheld life's morn decline,—
  And one had come from Bingen,—fair Bingen on the Rhine.

  "Tell my mother that her other son shall comfort her old age;
  For I was still a truant bird, that thought his home a cage.
  For my father was a soldier, and even as a child
  My heart leaped forth to hear him tell of struggles fierce and wild;
  And when he died, and left us to divide his scanty hoard,
  I let them take whate'er they would,—but kept my father's sword;
  And with boyish love I hung it where the bright light used to shine,
  On the cottage wall at Bingen,—calm Bingen on the Rhine.

  "Tell my sister not to weep for me, and sob with drooping head,
  When the troops come marching home again with glad and gallant
  But to look upon them proudly, with a calm and steadfast eye,
  For her brother was a soldier too, and not afraid to die;
  And if a comrade seek her love, I ask her in my name
  To listen to him kindly, without regret or shame,
  And to hang the old sword in its place (my father's sword and mine)
  For the honor of old Bingen,—dear Bingen on the Rhine.

  "There's another,—not a sister; in the happy days gone by
  You'd have known her by the merriment that sparkled in her eye;
  Too innocent for coquetry,—too fond for idle scorning,—
  O friend! I fear the lightest heart makes sometimes heaviest
  Tell her the last night of my life (for, ere the moon be risen,
  My body will be out of pain, my soul be out of prison),—
  I dreamed I stood with her, and saw the yellow sunlight shine
  On the vine-clad hills of Bingen,—fair Bingen on the Rhine.

  "I saw the blue Rhine sweep along,—I heard, or seemed to hear,
  The German songs we used to sing, in chorus sweet and clear;
  And down the pleasant river, and up the slanting hill,
  The echoing chorus sounding, through the evening calm and still;
  And her glad blue eyes were on me, as we passed, with friendly talk,
  Down many a path beloved of yore, and well-remembered walk!
  And her little hand lay lightly, confidingly in mine,—
  But we'll meet no more at Bingen,—loved Bingen on the Rhine."

  His trembling voice grew faint and hoarse,—his grasp was childish
  His eyes put on a dying look,—he sighed and ceased to speak;
  His comrade bent to lift him, but the spark of life had fled,—
  The soldier of the Legion in a foreign land is dead!
  And the soft moon rose up slowly, and calmly she looked down
  On the red sand of the battle-field, with bloody corses strewn;
  Yes, calmly on that dreadful scene her pale light seemed to shine,
  As it shone on distant Bingen,—fair Bingen on the Rhine.


* * * * *



  On Linden, when the sun was low,
  All bloodless lay the untrodden snow,
  And dark as winter was the flow
  Of Iser, rolling rapidly.

  But Linden saw another sight
  When the drum beat, at dead of night,
  Commanding fires of death to light
  The darkness of her scenery.

  By torch and trumpet fast arrayed,
  Each horseman drew his battle-blade,
  And furious every charger neighed,
  To join the dreadful revelry.

  Then shook the hills with thunder riven,
  Then rushed the steeds to battle driven,
  And louder than the bolts of heaven
  Far flashed the red artillery.

  But redder yet that light shall glow
  On Linden's hills of stainèd snow,
  And bloodier yet the torrent flow
  Of Iser, rolling rapidly.

  'Tis morn, but scarce yon level sun
  Can pierce the war-clouds, rolling dun,
  Where furious Frank and fiery Hun
  Shout in their sulphurous canopy.

  The combat deepens. On, ye brave,
  Who rush to glory, or the grave!
  Wave, Munich! all thy banners wave,
  And charge with all thy chivalry!

  Few, few shall part where many meet!
  The snow shall be their winding-sheet,
  And every turf beneath their feet
  Shall be a soldier's sepulchre.


* * * * *



  Now glory to the Lord of hosts, from whom all glories are!
  And glory to our sovereign liege, King Henry of Navarre!
  Now let there be the merry sound of music and the dance,
  Through thy corn-fields green, and sunny vines, O pleasant land of
  And thou, Rochelle, our own Rochelle, proud city of the waters,
  Again let raptures light the eyes of all thy mourning daughters;
  As thou wert constant in our ills, be joyous in our joys;
  For cold and stiff and still are they who wrought thy walls annoy.
  Hurrah! hurrah! a single field hath turned the chance of war!
  Hurrah! hurrah! for Ivry, and Henry of Navarre.

  Oh! how our hearts were beating, when, at the dawn of day,
  We saw the army of the League drawn out in long array;
  With all its priest-led citizens, and all its rebel peers,
  And Appenzel's stout infantry, and Egmont's Flemish spears.
  There rode the brood of false Lorraine, the curses of our land;
  And dark Mayenne was in the midst, a truncheon in his hand;
  An as we looked on them, we thought of Seine's empurpled flood,
  And good Coligni's hoary hair all dabbled with his blood;
  And we cried unto the living God, who rules the fate of war,
  To fight for His own holy name, and Henry of Navarre.

  The king has come to marshal us, in all his armor drest;
  And he has bound a snow-white plume upon his gallant crest.
  He looked upon his people, and a tear was in his eye;
  He looked upon the traitors, and his glance was stern and high.
  Right graciously he smiled on us, as rolled from wing to wing,
  Down all our line, a deafening shout: God save our lord the king!
  "And if my standard-bearer fall, as fall full well he may—
  For never saw I promise yet of such a bloody fray—
  Press where you see my white plume shine amidst the ranks of war,
  And be your oriflamme to-day the helmet of Navarre."

  Hurrah! the foes are moving. Hark to the mingled din,
  Of fife, and steed, and trump, and drum, and roaring culverin.
  The fiery duke is pricking fast across Saint André's plain,
  With all the hireling chivalry of Guelders and Almayne.
  Now by the lips of those ye love, fair gentlemen of France,
  Charge for the golden lilies—upon them with the lance!
  A thousand spurs are striking deep, a thousand spears in rest.
  A thousand knights are pressing close behind the snow-white crest;
  And in they burst, and on they rushed, while, like a guiding star,
  Amidst the thickest carnage blazed the helmet of Navarre.

  Now, God be praised, the day is ours: Mayenne hath turned his rein;
  D'Aumale hath cried for quarter; the Flemish count is slain;
  Their ranks are breaking like thin clouds before a Biscay gale;
  The field is heaped with bleeding steeds, and flags, and cloven mail.
  And then we thought on vengeance, and, all along our van,
  Remember Saint Bartholomew! was passed from man to man.
  But out spake gentle Henry—"No Frenchmen is my foe:
  Down, down, with every foreigner, but let your brethren go."
  Oh! was there ever such a knight, in friendship or in war,
  As our sovereign lord, King Henry, the soldier of Navarre?

  Right well fought all the Frenchmen who fought for France to-day;
  And many a lordly banner God gave them for a prey.
  But we of the religion have borne us best in fight;
  And the good lord of Rosny hath ta'en the cornet white—
  Our own true Maximilian the cornet white hath ta'en,
  The cornet white with crosses black, the flag of false Lorraine.
  Up with it high; unfurl it wide—that all the host may know
  How God hath humbled the proud house which wrought His Church such
  Then on the ground, while trumpets sound their loudest point of war,
  Fling the red shreds, a footcloth meet for Henry of Navarre.

  Ho! maidens of Vienna; ho! matrons of Lucerne—
  Weep, weep, and rend your hair for those who never shall return.
  Ho! Philip, send, for charity, thy Mexican pistoles,
  That Antwerp monks may sing a mass for thy poor spearmen's souls.
  Ho! gallant nobles of the League, look that your arms be bright;
  Ho! burghers of St. Genevieve, keep watch and ward to-night;
  For our God hath crushed the tyrant, our God hath raised the slave,
  And mocked the counsel of the wise, and the valor of the brave.
  Then glory to His holy name, from whom all glories are;
  And glory to our sovereign lord, King Henry of Navarre!


* * * * *


  You know we French stormed Ratisbon:
    A mile or so away,
  On a little mound, Napoleon
    Stood on our storming-day;
  With neck out-thrust, you fancy how,
    Legs wide, arms locked behind,
  As if to balance the prone brow,
    Oppressive with its mind.

  Just as perhaps he mused, "My plans
    That soar, to earth may fall,
  Let once my army-leader Lannes
    Waver at yonder wall,"
  Out 'twixt the battery-smokes there flew
    A rider, bound on bound
  Full-galloping; nor bridle drew
    Until he reached the mound.

  Then off there flung in smiling joy,
    And held himself erect
  By just his horse's mane, a boy:
    You hardly could suspect
  (So tight he kept his lips compressed,
    Scarce any blood came through),
  You looked twice ere you saw his breast
    Was all but shot in two.

  "Well," cried he, "Emperor, by God's grace
    We've got you Ratisbon!
  The marshal's in the market-place,
    And you'll be there anon
  To see your flag-bird flap his vans
    Where I, to heart's desire,
  Perched him!" The chief's eye flashed; his plans
    Soared up again like fire.

  The chief's eye flashed; but presently
    Softened itself, as sheathes
  A film the mother-eagle's eye
    When her bruised eaglet breathes:
  "You're wounded!" "Nay," his soldier's pride
    Touched to the quick, he said:
  "I'm killed, sire!" And, his chief beside,
    Smiling, the boy fell dead.


* * * * *


  The work is done! the spent flame burns no more,
    The furnace fires smoke and die,
  The iron flood boils over. Ope the door,
    And let the haughty one pass by!
  Roar, mighty river, rush upon your course,
    A bound,—and, from your dwelling past,
  Dash forward, like a torrent from its source,
    A flame from the volcano cast!
  To gulp your lava-waves earth's jaws extend,
    Your fury in one mass fling forth,—
  In your steel mould, O Bronze, a slave descend,
    An emperor return to earth!
  Again NAPOLEON,—'tis his form appears!
    Hard soldier in unending quarrel,
  Who cost so much of insult, blood, and tears,
    For only a few boughs of laurel!

  For mourning France it was a day of grief,
    When, down from its high station flung,
  His mighty statue, like some shameful thief,
    In coils of a vile rope was hung;
  When we beheld at the grand column's base,
    And o'er a shrieking cable bowed,
  The stranger's strength that mighty bronze displace
    To hurrahs of a foreign crowd;
  When, forced by thousand arms, head-foremost thrown,
    The proud mass cast in monarch mould
  Made sudden fall, and on the hard, cold stone
    Its iron carcass sternly rolled.
  The Hun, the stupid Hun, with soiled, rank skin,
    Ignoble fury in his glance,
  The emperor's form the kennel's filth within
    Drew after him, in face of France!
  On those within whose bosoms hearts hold reign,
    That hour like remorse must weigh
  On each French brow,—'tis the eternal stain,
    Which only death can wash away!
  I saw, where palace-walls gave shade and ease,
    The wagons of the foreign force;
  I saw them strip the bark which clothed our trees,
    To cast it to their hungry horse.
  I saw the Northman, with his savage lip,
    Bruising our flesh till black with gore,
  Our bread devour,—on our nostrils sip
    The air which was our own before!

  In the abasement and the pain,—the weight
    Of outrages no words make known,—
  I charged one only being with my hate:
    Be thou accursed, Napoleon!
  O lank-haired Corsican, your France was fair,
    In the full sun of Messidor!
  She was a tameless and a rebel mare,
    Nor steel bit nor gold rein she bore;
  Wild steed with rustic flank;—yet, while she trod,—
    Reeking with blood of royalty,
  But proud with strong foot striking the old sod,
    At last, and for the first time, free,—
  Never a hand, her virgin form passed o'er,
    Left blemish nor affront essayed;
  And never her broad sides the saddle bore,
    Nor harness by the stranger made.
  A noble vagrant,—with coat smooth and bright,
    And nostril red, and action proud,—
  As high she reared, she did the world affright
    With neighings which rang long and loud.
  You came; her mighty loins, her paces scanned,
    Pliant and eager for the track;
  Hot Centaur, twisting in her mane your hand,
    You sprang all booted to her back.
  Then, as she loved the war's exciting sound,
    The smell of powder and the drum,
  You gave her Earth for exercising ground,
    Bade Battles as her pastimes come!
  Then, no repose for her,—no nights, no sleep!
    The air and toil for evermore!
  And human forms like unto sand crushed deep,
    And blood which rose her chest before!
  Through fifteen years her hard hoofs' rapid course
    So ground the generations,
  And she passed smoking in her speed and force
    Over the breast of nations;
  Till,—tired in ne'er earned goal to place vain trust,
    To tread a path ne'er left behind,
  To knead the universe and like a dust
    To uplift scattered human kind,—
  Feebly and worn, and gasping as she trode,
    Stumbling each step of her career,
  She craved for rest the Corsican who rode.
    But, torturer! you would not hear;
  You pressed her harder with your nervous thigh,
    You tightened more the goading bit,
  Choked in her foaming mouth her frantic cry,
    And brake her teeth in fury-fit.
  She rose,—but the strife came. From farther fall
    Saved not the curb she could not know,—
  She went down, pillowed on the cannon-ball,
    And thou wert broken by the blow!

  Now born again, from depths where thou wert hurled,
    A radiant eagle dost thou rise;
  Winging thy flight again to rule the world,
    Thine image reascends the skies.
  No longer now the robber of a crown,—
    The insolent usurper,—he,
  With cushions of a throne, unpitying, down
    Who pressed the throat of Liberty,—
  Old slave of the Alliance, sad and lone,
    Who died upon a sombre rock,
  And France's image until death dragged on
    For chain, beneath the stranger's stroke,—
  NAPOLEON stands, unsullied by a stain:
    Thanks to the flatterer's tuneful race
  The lying poets who ring praises vain,
    Has Cæsar 'mong the gods found place!
  His image to the city-walls gives light;
    His name has made the city's hum,—
  Still sounded ceaselessly, as through the fight
    It echoed farther than the drum.
  From the high suburbs, where the people crowd,
    Doth Paris, an old pilgrim now,
  Each day descend to greet the pillar proud,
    And humble there his monarch brow;—
  The arms encumbered with a mortal wreath,
    With flowers for that bronze's pall,
  (No mothers look on, as they pass beneath,—
    It grew beneath their tears so tall!)—
  In working-vest, in drunkenness of soul,
    Unto the fife's and trumpet's tone,
  Doth joyous Paris dance the Carmagnole
    Around the great Napoleon.

  Thus, Gentle Monarchs, pass unnoted on!
    Mild Pastors of Mankind, away!
  Sages, depart, as common brows have gone,
    Devoid of the immortal ray!
  For vainly you make light the people's chain;
    And vainly, like a calm flock, come
  On your own footsteps, without sweat or pain,
    The people,—treading towards their tomb.
  Soon as your star doth to its setting glide,
    And its last lustre shall be given
  By your quenched name,—upon the popular tide
    Scarce a faint furrow shall be riven.
  Pass, pass ye on! For you no statue high!
    Your names shall vanish from the horde:
  Their memory is for those who lead to die
    Beneath the cannon and the sword;
  Their love, for him who on the humid field
    By thousands lays to rot their bones;
  For him, who bids them pyramids to build,—
    And bear upon their backs the stones!

From the French of AUGUSTE BARBIER.

* * * * *



  I praised the speech, but cannot now abide it,
  That warre is sweet to those that have not try'd it;
  For I have proved it now and plainly see't,
  It is so sweet, it maketh all things sweet.
  At home Canaric wines and Greek grow lothsome;
  Here milk is nectar, water tasteth toothsome.
  There without baked, rost, boyl'd, it is no cheere;
  Bisket we like, and Bonny Clabo here.
  There we complain of one wan roasted chick;
  Here meat worse cookt ne're makes us sick.
  At home in silken sparrers, beds of Down,
  We scant can rest, but still tosse up and down;
  Here we can sleep, a saddle to our pillow,
  A hedge the Curtaine, Canopy a Willow.
  There if a child but cry, O what a spite!
  Here we can brook three larums in one night.
  There homely rooms must be perfumed with Roses;
  Here match and powder ne're offend our noses.
  There from a storm of rain we run like Pullets;
  Here we stand fast against a shower of bullets.
  Lo, then how greatly their opinions erre,
  That think there is no great delight in warre;
    But yet for this, sweet warre, He be thy debtor,
    I shall forever love my home the better.


* * * * *


  Dark fell the night, the watch was set,
  The host was idly spread,
  The Danes around their watchfires met,
  Caroused, and fiercely fed.

  The chiefs beneath a tent of leaves
  And Guthrum, king of all,
  Devoured the flesh of England's beeves,
  And laughed at England's fall.
  Each warrior proud, each Danish earl,
  In mail of wolf-skin clad,
  Their bracelets white with plundered pearl,
  Their eyes with triumph mad.

  From Humber-land to Severn-land,
  And on to Tamar stream,
  Where Thames makes green the towery strand,
  Where Medway's waters gleam,—
  With hands of steel and mouths of flame
  They raged the kingdom through;
  And where the Norseman sickle came,
  No crop but hunger grew.

  They loaded many an English horse
  With wealth of cities fair;
  They dragged from many a father's corse
  The daughter by her hair.
  And English slaves, and gems and gold,
  Were gathered round the feast;
  Till midnight in their woodland hold,
  O, never that riot ceased.

  In stalked a warrior tall and rude
  Before the strong sea-kings;
  "Ye Lords and Earls of Odin's brood,
  Without a harper sings.
  He seems a simple man and poor,
  But well he sounds the lay;
  And well, ye Norseman chiefs, be sure,
  Will ye the song repay."

  In trod the bard with keen cold look,
  And glanced along the board,
  That with the shout and war-cry shook
  Of many a Danish lord.
  But thirty brows, inflamed and stern,
  Soon bent on him their gaze,
  While calm he gazed, as if to learn
  Who chief deserved his praise.

  Loud Guthrum spake,—"Nay, gaze not thus,
  Thou Harper weak and poor!
  By Thor! who bandy looks with us
  Must worse than looks endure.
  Sing high the praise of Denmark's host,
  High praise each dauntless Earl;
  The brave who stun this English coast
  With war's unceasing whirl."

  The Harper slowly bent his head,
  And touched aloud the string;
  Then raised his face, and boldly said,
  "Hear thou my lay, O King!
  High praise from every mouth of man
  To all who boldly strive,
  Who fall where first the fight began,
  And ne'er go back alive.

  "Fill high your cups, and swell the shout,
  At famous Regnar's name!
  Who sank his host in bloody rout,
  When he to Humber came.
  His men were chased, his sons were slain,
  And he was left alone.
  They bound him in an iron chain
  Upon a dungeon stone.

  "With iron links they bound him fast;
  With snakes they filled the hole,
  That made his flesh their long repast,
  And bit into his soul.

  "Great chiefs, why sink in gloom your eyes?
  Why champ your teeth in pain?
  Still lives the song though Regnar dies!
  Fill high your cups again!
  Ye too, perchance, O Norseman lords!
  Who fought and swayed so long,
  Shall soon but live in minstrel words,
  And owe your names to song.

  "This land has graves by thousands more
  Than that where Regnar lies.
  When conquests fade, and rule is o'er,
  The sod must close your eyes.
  How soon, who knows? Not chief, nor bard;
  And yet to me 'tis given,
  To see your foreheads deeply scarred,
  And guess the doom of Heaven.

  "I may not read or when or how,
  But, Earls and Kings, be sure
  I see a blade o'er every brow,
  Where pride now sits secure.
  Fill high the cups, raise loud the strain!
  When chief and monarch fall,
  Their names in song shall breathe again,
  And thrill the feastful hall."

  Grim sat the chiefs; one heaved a groan,
  And one grew pale with dread,
  His iron mace was grasped by one,
  By one his wine was shed.
  And Guthrum cried, "Nay, bard, no more
  We hear thy boding lay;
  Make drunk the song with spoil and gore!
  Light up the joyous fray!"
  "Quick throbs my brain,"—so burst the song,—
  To hear the strife once more.
  The mace, the axe, they rest too long;
  Earth cries, My thirst is sore.
  More blithely twang the strings of bows
  Than strings of harps in glee;
  Red wounds are lovelier than the rose
  Or rosy lips to me.

  "O, fairer than a field of flowers,
  When flowers in England grew,
  Would be the battle's marshalled powers,
  The plain of carnage new.
  With all its death before my soul
  The vision rises fair;
  Raise loud the song, and drain the bowl!
  I would that I were there!"

  Loud rang the harp, the minstrel's eye
  Rolled fiercely round the throng;
  It seemed two crashing hosts were nigh,
  Whose shock aroused the song.
  A golden cup King Guthrum gave
  To him who strongly played;
  And said, "I won it from the slave
  Who once o'er England swayed."

  King Guthrum cried, "'Twas Alfred's own;
  Thy song befits the brave:
  The King who cannot guard his throne
  Nor wine nor song shall have."
  The minstrel took the goblet bright,
  And said, "I drink the wine
  To him who owns by justest right
  The cup thou bid'st be mine.
  To him, your Lord, O shout ye all!
  His meed be deathless praise!
  The King who dares not nobly fall,
  Dies basely all his days."

  "The praise thou speakest," Guthrum said,
  "With sweetness fills mine ear;
  For Alfred swift before me fled,
  And left me monarch here.
  The royal coward never dared
  Beneath mine eye to stand.
  O, would that now this feast he shared,
  And saw me rule his land!"

  Then stern the minstrel rose, and spake,
  And gazed upon the King,—
  "Not now the golden cup I take,
  Nor more to thee I sing.
  Another day, a happier hour,
  Shall bring me here again:
  The cup shall stay in Guthrum's power,
  Till I demand it then."

  The Harper turned and left the shed,
  Nor bent to Guthrum's crown;
  And one who marked his visage said
  It wore a ghastly frown.
  The Danes ne'er saw that Harper more,
  For soon as morning rose,
  Upon their camp King Alfred bore,
  And slew ten thousand foes.


* * * * *


[A modernized form of the old ballad of the "Hunting o' the Cheviot." Some circumstances of the battle of Olter-bourne (A.D. 1388) are woven into the ballad, and the affairs of the two events are confounded. The ballad preserved in the "Percy Reliques" is probably as old as 1574. The one following is not later than the time of Charles II]

  God prosper long our noble king,
    Our lives and safeties all;
  A woful hunting once there did
    In Chevy-Chace befall.

  To drive the deer with hound and horn
    Earl Piercy took his way;
  The child may rue that is unborn
    The hunting of that day.

  The stout Earl of Northumberland
    A vow to God did make,
  His pleasure in the Scottish woods
    Three summer days to take,—

  The chiefest harts in Chevy-Chace
    To kill and bear away.
  These tidings to Earl Douglas came,
    In Scotland where he lay;

  Who sent Earl Piercy present word
    He would prevent his sport.
  The English earl, not fearing that,
    Did to the woods resort.

  With fifteen hundred bowmen bold,
    All chosen men of might,
  Who knew full well in time of need
    To aim their shafts aright.

  The gallant greyhounds swiftly ran
    To chase the fallow deer;
  On Monday they began to hunt,
    When daylight did appear;

  And long before high noon they had
    A hundred fat bucks slain;
  Then, having dined, the drovers went
    To rouse the deer again.

  The bowmen mustered on the hills,
    Well able to endure;
  And all their rear, with special care,
    That day was guarded sure.

  The hounds ran swiftly through the woods
    The nimble deer to take,
  That with their cries the hills and dales
    An echo shrill did make.

  Lord Piercy to the quarry went,
    To view the slaughtered deer;
  Quoth he, "Earl Douglas promised
    This day to meet me here;

  "But if I thought he would not come,
    No longer would I stay;"
  With that a brave young gentleman
    Thus to the earl did say:—

  "Lo, yonder doth Earl Douglas come,—
    His men in armor bright;
  Full twenty hundred Scottish spears
    All marching in our sight;

  "All men of pleasant Tividale,
    Fast by the river Tweed;"
  "Then cease your sports," Earl Piercy said,
    "And take your bows with speed;

  "And now with me, my countrymen,
    Your courage forth advance;
  For never was there champion yet,
    In Scotland or in France,

  "That ever did on horseback come,
    But if my hap it were,
  I durst encounter man for man,
    With him to break a spear."

  Earl Douglas on his milk-white steed,
    Most like a baron bold,
  Rode foremost of his company,
    Whose armor shone like gold.

  "Show me," said he, "whose men you be,
    That hunt so boldly here,
  That, without my consent, do chase
    And kill my fallow-deer."

  The first man that did answer make,
    Was noble Piercy, he—
  Who said, "We list not to declare,
    Nor show whose men we be:

  "Yet will we spend our dearest blood
    Thy chiefest harts to slay."
  Then Douglas swore a solemn oath,
    And thus in rage did say:—

  "Ere thus I will out-braved be,
    One of us two shall die;
  I know thee well, an earl thou art,—
    Lord Piercy, so am I.

  "But trust me, Piercy, pity it were,
    And great offence, to kill
  Any of these our guiltless men,
    For they have done no ill.

  "Let you and me the battle try,
    And set our men aside."
  "Accursed be he," Earl Piercy said,
    "By whom this is denied."

  Then stepped a gallant squire forth,
    Witherington was his name,
  Who said, "I would not have it told
    To Henry, our king, for shame,

  "That e'er my captain fought on foot,
    And I stood looking on.
  You two be earls," said Witherington,
    "And I a squire alone;

  "I'll do the best that do I may,
    While I have power to stand;
  While I have power to wield my sword
    I'll fight with heart and hand."

  Our English archers bent their bows,—
    Their hearts were good and true;
  At the first flight of arrows sent,
    Full fourscore Scots they slew.

  Yet stays Earl Douglas on the bent,
    As chieftain stout and good;
  As valiant captain, all unmoved,
    The shock he firmly stood.

  His host he parted had in three,
    As leader ware and tried;
  And soon his spearmen on their foes
    Bore down on every side.

  Throughout the English archery
    They dealt full many a wound;
  But still our valiant Englishmen
    All firmly kept their ground.

  And throwing straight their bows away,
    They grasped their swords so bright;
  And now sharp blows, a heavy shower,
    On shields and helmets light.

  They closed full fast on every side,—
    No slackness there was found;
  And many a gallant gentleman
    Lay gasping on the ground.

  In truth, it was a grief to see
    How each one chose his spear,
  And how the blood out of their breasts
    Did gush like water clear.

  At last these two stout earls did meet;
    Like captains of great might,
  Like lions wode, they laid on lode,
    And made a cruel fight.

  They fought until they both did sweat,
    With swords of tempered steel,
  Until the blood, like drops of rain,
    They trickling down did feel.

  "Yield thee, Lord Piercy," Douglas said,
    "In faith I will thee bring
  Where thou shalt high advanced be
    By James, our Scottish king.

  "Thy ransom I will freely give,
    And this report of thee,—
  Thou art the most courageous knight
    That ever I did see."

  "No, Douglas," saith Earl Piercy then,
    "Thy proffer I do scorn;
  I will not yield to any Scot
    That ever yet was born."

  With that there came an arrow keen
    Out of an English bow,
  Which struck Earl Douglas to the heart,—
    A deep and deadly blow;

  Who never spake more words than these:
    "Fight on, my merry men all;
  For why, my life is at an end;
    Lord Piercy sees my fall."

  Then leaving life, Earl Piercy took
    The dead man by the hand;
  And said, "Earl Douglas, for thy life
    Would I had lost my land.

  "In truth, my very heart doth bleed
    With sorrow for thy sake;
  For sure a more redoubted knight
    Mischance did never take."

  A knight amongst the Scots there was
    Who saw Earl Douglas die,
  Who straight in wrath did vow avenge
    Upon the Earl Piercy.

  Sir Hugh Mountgomery was he called,
    Who, with a spear full bright,
  Well mounted on a gallant steed,
    Ran fiercely through the fight;

  And past the English archers all,
    Without a dread or fear;
  And through Earl Piercy's body then
    He thrust his hateful spear.

  With such vehement force and might
    He did his body gore,
  The staff ran through the other side
    A large cloth-yard and more.

  So thus did both these nobles die,
    Whose courage none could stain.
  An English archer then perceived
    The noble earl was slain.

  He had a bow bent in his hand,
    Made of a trusty tree;
  An arrow of a cloth-yard long
    To the hard head haled he.

  Against Sir Hugh Mountgomery
    So right the shaft he set,
  The gray goose wing that was thereon
    In his heart's blood was wet.

  This fight did last from break of day
    Till setting of the sun;
  For when they rung the evening-bell
    The battle scarce was done.

  With stout Earl Piercy there were slain
    Sir John of Egerton,
  Sir Robert Ratcliff, and Sir John,
    Sir James, that bold baron.

  And with Sir George and stout Sir James,
    Both knights of good account.
  Good Sir Ralph Raby there was slain,
    Whose prowess did surmount.

  For Witherington my heart is woe
    That ever he slain should be,
  For when his legs were hewn in two,
    He knelt and fought on his knee.

  And with Earl Douglas there was slain
    Sir Hugh Mountgomery,
  Sir Charles Murray, that from the field
    One foot would never flee;

  Sir Charles Murray of Ratcliff, too,—
    His sister's son was he;
  Sir David Lamb, so well esteemed,
    But saved he could not be.

  And the Lord Maxwell in like case
    Did with Earl Douglas die:
  Of twenty hundred Scottish spears,
    Scarce fifty-five did fly.

  Of fifteen hundred Englishmen,
    Went home but fifty-three;
  The rest in Chevy-Chace were slain,
    Under the greenwood tree.

  Next day did many widows come,
    Their husbands to bewail;
  They washed their wounds in brinish tears.
    But all would not prevail.

  Their bodies, bathed in purple blood,
    They bore with them away;
  They kissed them dead a thousand times,
    Ere they were clad in clay.

  The news was brought to Edinburgh,
    Where Scotland's king did reign,
  That brave Earl Douglas suddenly
    Was with an arrow slain:

  "O heavy news," King James did say;
    "Scotland can witness be
  I have not any captain more
    Of such account as he."

  Like tidings to King Henry came
    Within as short a, space,
  That Piercy of Northumberland
    Was slain in Chevy-Chace:

  "Now God be with him," said our King,
    "Since 'twill no better be;
  I trust I have within my realm
    Five hundred as good as he:

  "Yet shall not Scots or Scotland say
    But I will vengeance take;
  I'll be revenged on them all
    For brave Earl Piercy's sake."

  This vow full well the king performed
    After at Humbledown;
  In one day fifty knights were slain
    With lords of high renown;

  And of the rest, of small account,
    Did many hundreds die:
  Thus endeth the hunting of Chevy-Chace,
    Made by the Earl Piercy.

  God save the king, and bless this land,
    With plenty, joy, and peace;
  And grant, henceforth, that foul debate
    'Twixt noblemen may cease.


* * * * *


[A confused echo of the Scotch expedition which should have brought the Maid of Norway to Scotland, about 1285.]

  The king sits in Dunfermline town,
    Drinking the blude-red wine,
  "O whare will I get a skeely skipper,
    To sail this new ship of mine!"

  O up and spake an eldern knight,
    Sat at the king's right knee,—
  "Sir Patrick Spens is the best sailor,
    That ever sailed the sea."

  Our king has written a braid letter,
    And sealed it with his hand,
  And sent it to Sir Patrick Spens,
    Was walking on the strand.

  "To Noroway, to Noroway,
    To Noroway o'er the faem;
  The king's daughter of Noroway,
    'Tis thou maun bring her hame."

  The first word that Sir Patrick read,
    Sae loud loud laughèd he;
  The neist word that Sir Patrick read,
    The tear blinded his e'e.

  "O wha is this has done this deed,
    And tauld the king o' me,
  To send us out, at this time of the year,
    To sail upon the sea?

  "Be it wind, be it weet, be it hail, be it sleet,
    Our ship must sail the faem;
  The king's daughter of Noroway,
    'Tis we must fetch her hame."

  They hoysed their sails on Monenday morn,
    Wi' a' the speed they may;
  They hae landed in Noroway,
    Upon a Wodensday.

  They hadna been a week, a week,
    In Noroway, but twae,
  When that the lords o' Noroway
    Began aloud to say,—

  "Ye Scottishmen spend a' our king's goud,
    And a' our queenis fee."
  "Ye lie, ye lie, ye liars loud!
    Fu' loud I hear ye lie.

  "For I brought as much white monic,
    As gane[A] my men and me,
  And I brought a half-fou[B] o' gude red goud,
    Out o'er the sea wi' me.

  "Make ready, make ready, my merrymen a'!
    Our gude ship sails the morn."
  "Now, ever alake, my master dear,
    I fear a deadly storm!

  "I saw the new moon, late yestreen,
    Wi' the auld moon in her arm;
  And, if we gang to sea, master,
    I fear we'll come to harm."

  They hadna sailed a league, a league,
    A league but barely three,
  When the lift grew dark, and the wind blew loud,
    And gurly grew the sea.

  The ankers brak, and the topmasts lap,
    It was sic a deadly storm;
  And the waves cam o'er the broken ship,
    Till a' her sides were torn.

  "O where will I get a gude sailor,
    To take my helm in hand,
  Till I get up to the tall top-mast,
    To see if I can spy land?"

  "O here am I, a sailor gude,
    To take the helm in hand,
  Till you go up to the tall top-mast;
    But I fear you'll ne'er spy land."

  He hadna gane a step, a step,
    A step but barely are,
  When a bout flew out of our goodly ship,
    And the salt sea it came in.

  "Gae, fetch a web o' silken claith,
    Another o' the twine,
  And wap them into our ship's side,
    And let na the sea come in."

  They fetched a web o' the silken claith,
    Another o' the twine,
  And they wapped them round that gude ship's side,
    But still the sea came in.

  O laith, laith, were our gude Scots lords
    To weet their cork-heeled shoon!
  But lang or a' the play was played,
    They wat their hats aboon.

  And mony was the feather-bed,
    That flattered on the faem;
  And mony was the gude lord's son,
    That never mair cam hame.

  The ladyes wrang their fingers white,
    The maidens tore their hair,
  A' for the sake of their true loves;
    For them they'll see na mair.

  O lang, lang, may the ladyes sit,
    Wi' their fans into their hand,
  Before they see Sir Patrick Spens
    Come sailing to the strand!

  And lang, lang, may the maidens sit,
    Wi' their goud kaims in their hair,
  A' waiting for their ain dear loves!
    For them they'll see na mair.

  O forty miles off Aberdeen,
    'Tis fifty fathoms deep,
  And there lies gude Sir Patrick Spens,
    Wi' the Scots lords at his feet.

[Footnote A: Suffice.]

[Footnote B: The eighth part of a peck.]


* * * * *


[This ballad exists in Denmark, and in other European countries. The Scotch point out Blackhouse, on the wild Douglas Burn, a tributary of the Yarrow, as the scene of the tragedy.]

  "Rise up, rise up, now, Lord Douglas," she says,
    "And put on your armor so bright;
  Let it never be said, that a daughter of thine
    Was married to a lord under night.

  "Rise up, rise up, my seven bold sons,
    And put on your armor so bright,
  And take better care of your youngest sister,
    For your eldest's awa the last night."

  He's mounted her on a milk-white steed,
    And himself on a dapple grey,
  With a bugelet horn hung down by his side,
    And lightly they rade away.

  Lord William lookit o'er his left shoulder,
    To see what he could see,
  And there he spyed her seven brethren bold,
    Come riding over the lea.

  "Light down, light down, Lady Marg'ret," he said,
    "And hold my steed in your hand,
  Until that against your seven brothers bold,
    And your father, I mak a stand."

  She held his steed in her milk-white hand,
    And never shed one tear,
  Until that she saw her seven brethren fa',
    And her father hard fighting, who loved her so dear.

  "O hold your hand, Lord William!" she said,
    "For your strokes they are wond'rous sair;
  True lovers I can get many a ane,
    But a father I can never get mair."

  O she's ta'en out her handkerchief,
    It was o' the holland sae fine,
  And aye she dighted her father's bloody wounds,
    That were redder than the wine.

  "O chuse, O chuse, Lady Marg'ret," he said,
    "O whether will ye gang or bide?"
  "I'll gang, I'll gang, Lord William," she said,
    "For ye have left me no other guide."

  He's lifted her on a milk-white steed,
    And himself on a dapple grey,
  With a bugelet horn hung down by his side,
    And slowly they baith rade away.

  O they rade on, and on they rade,
    And a' by the light of the moon,
  Until they cam to yon wan water,
    And there they lighted down.

  They lighted down to tak a drink
    Of the spring that ran sae clear;
  And down the stream ran his gude heart's blood,
    And sair she gan to fear.

  "Hold up, hold up, Lord William," she says,
    "For I fear that you are slain!"
  "'Tis naething but the shadow of my scarlet cloak,
    That shines in the water sae plain."

  O they rade on, and on they rade,
    And a' by the light of the moon,
  Until they cam to his mother's ha' door,
    And there they lighted down.

  "Get up, get up, lady mother," he says,
    "Get up, and let me in!—
  Get up, get up, lady mother," he says,
    "For this night my fair ladye I've win.

  "O mak my bed, lady mother," he says,
    "O mak it braid and deep!
  And lay Lady Marg'ret close at my back,
    And the sounder I will sleep."

  Lord William was dead lang ere midnight,
    Lady Marg'ret lang ere day—
  And all true lovers that go thegither,
    May they have mair luck than they!

  Lord William was buried in St. Mary's kirk,
    Lady Margaret in Mary's quire;
  Out o' the lady's grave grew a bonny red rose,
    And out o' the knight's a brier.

  And they twa met, and they twa plat,
    And fain they wad be near;
  And a' the warld might ken right weel,
    They were twa lovers dear.

  But bye and rade the Black Douglas,
    And wow but he was rough!
  For he pulled up the bonny brier,
    And flang 'tin St. Mary's loch.


* * * * *


  Oh, it's twenty gallant gentlemen
    Rode out to hunt the deer,
  With mirth upon the silver horn
    And gleam upon the spear;
  They galloped through the meadow-grass,
    They sought the forest's gloom,
  And loudest rang Sir Morven's laugh,
    And lightest tost his plume.
      There's no delight by day or night
        Like hunting in the morn;
      So busk ye, gallant gentlemen,
        And sound the silver horn!

  They rode into the dark greenwood
    By ferny dell and glade,
  And now and then upon their cloaks
    The yellow sunshine played;
  They heard the timid forest-birds
    Break off amid their glee,
  They saw the startled leveret,
    But not a stag did see.
      Wind, wind the horn, on summer morn!
        Though ne'er a buck appear,
      There's health for horse and gentleman
        A-hunting of the deer!

  They panted up Ben Lomond's side
    Where thick the leafage grew,
  And when they bent the branches back
    The sunbeams darted through;
  Sir Morven in his saddle turned,
    And to his comrades spake,
  "Now quiet! we shall find a stag
    Beside the Brownies' Lake.
      Then sound not on the bugle-horn,
        Bend bush and do not break,
      Lest ye should start the timid hart
        A-drinking at the lake."

  Now they have reached the Brownies' Lake,—
    A blue eye in the wood,—
  And on its brink a moment's space
    All motionless they stood;
  When, suddenly, the silence broke
    With fifty bowstrings' twang,
  And hurtling through the drowsy air
    Full fifty arrows sang.
      Ah, better for those gentlemen,
        Than horn and slender spear,
      Were morion and buckler true,
        A-hunting of the deer.

  Not one of that brave company
    Shall hunt the deer again;
  Some fell beside the Brownies' Pool,
    Some dropt in dell or glen;
  An arrow pierced Sir Morven's breast,
    His horse plunged in the lake,
  And swimming to the farther bank
    He left a bloody wake.
      Ah, what avails the silver horn,
        And what the slender spear?
      There's other quarry in the wood
        Beside the fallow deer!

  O'er ridge and hollow sped the horse
    Besprent with blood and foam,
  Nor slackened pace until at eve
    He brought his master home.
  How tenderly the Lady Ruth
    The cruel dart withdrew!
  "False Tirrell shot the bolt," she said,
    "That my Sir Morven slew!"
      Deep in the forest lurks the foe,
        While gayly shines the morn:
      Hang up the broken spear, and blow
        A dirge upon the horn.


* * * * *



  Fair stood the wind for France,
  When we our sails advance,
  Nor now to prove our chance
      Longer will tarry;
  But putting to the main,
  At Kause, the mouth of Seine,
  With all his martial train,
      Landed King Harry,

  And taking many a fort,
  Furnished in warlike sort,
  Marchèd towards Agincourt
      In happy hour,—
  Skirmishing day by day
  With those that stopped his way,
  Where the French general lay
      With all his power,

  Which in his height of pride,
  King Henry to deride,
  His ransom to provide
      To the king sending;
  Which he neglects the while,
  As from a nation vile,
  Yet, with an angry smile,
      Their fall portending.

  And turning to his men,
  Quoth our brave Henry then:
  Though they to one be ten,
      Be not amazèd;
  Yet have we well begun,
  Battles so bravely won
  Have ever to the sun
      By fame been raisèd.

  And for myself, quoth he,
  This my full rest shall be;
  England ne'er mourn for me,
      Nor more esteem me,
  Victor I will remain,
  Or on this earth lie slain;
  Never shall she sustain
      Loss to redeem me.

  Poitiers and Cressy tell,
  When most their pride did swell,
  Under our swords they fell;
      No less our skill is
  Than when our grandsire great,
  Claiming the regal seat,
  By many a warlike feat
      Lopped the French lilies.

  The Duke of York so dread
  The eager vaward led;
  With the main Henry sped,
      Amongst his henchmen,
  Excester had the rear,—
  A braver man not there:
  O Lord! how hot they were
      On the false Frenchmen!

  They now to fight are gone;
  Armor on armor shone;
  Drum now to drum did groan,—
      To hear was wonder;
  That with the cries they make
  The very earth did shake;
  Trumpet to trumpet spake,
      Thunder to thunder.

  Well it thine age became,
  O noble Erpingham!
  Which did the signal aim
      To our hid forces;
  When, from a meadow by,
  Like a storm, suddenly.
  The English archery
      Struck the French horses

  With Spanish yew so strong,
  Arrows a cloth-yard long,
  That like to serpents stung,
      Piercing the weather;
  None from his fellow starts,
  But playing manly parts,
  And, like true English hearts,
      Stuck close together.

  When down their bows they threw,
  And forth their bilboes drew,
  And on the French they flew,
      Not one was tardy;
  Arms were from shoulders sent;
  Scalps to the teeth were rent;
  Down the French peasants went;
      Our men were hardy.

  This while our noble king,
  His broadsword brandishing,
  Down the French host did ding,
      As to o'erwhelm it;
  And many a deep wound lent,
  His arms with blood besprent,
  And many a cruel dent
      Bruisèd his helmet.

  Glo'ster, that duke so good,
  Next of the royal blood,
  For famous England stood
      With his brave brother,
  Clarence, in steel so bright,
  Though but a maiden knight,
  Yet in that furious fight
      Scarce such another.

  Warwick in blood did wade;
  Oxford the foe invade,
  And cruel slaughter made,
    Still as they ran up.
  Suffolk his axe did ply;
  Beaumont and Willoughby
  Bare them right doughtily,
      Ferrers and Fanhope.

  Upon Saint Crispin's day
  Fought was this noble fray,
  Which fame did not delay
      To England to carry;
  O, when shall Englishmen
  With such acts fill a pen,
  Or England breed again
      Such a King Harry?


* * * * *




    Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more;
  Or close the wall up with our English dead!
  In peace, there's nothing so becomes a man,
  As modest stillness, and humility:
  But when the blast of war blows in our ears,
  Then imitate the action of the tiger;
  Stiffen the sinews, summon up the blood,
  Disguise fair nature with hard-favored rage:
  Then lend the eye a terrible aspèct;
  Let it pry through the portage of the head,
  Like the brass cannon; let the brow o'erwhelm it,
  As fearfully as doth a gallèd rock
  O'erhang and jutty his confounded base,
  Swilled with the wild and wasteful ocean.
  Now set the teeth, and stretch the nostril wide;
  Hold hard the breath, and bend up every spirit
  To his full height!—On, on, you noblest English,
  Whose blood is fet from fathers of war-proof!
  Fathers, that, like so many Alexanders,
  Have, in these parts, from morn till even fought,
  And sheathed their swords for lack of argument.
  Dishonor not your mothers; now attest,
  That those whom you called fathers, did beget you!
  Be copy now to men of grosser blood,
  And teach them how to war!—And you, good yeomen,
  Whose limbs were made in England, show us here
  The mettle of your pasture; let us swear
  That you are worth your breeding: which I doubt not;
  For there is none of you so mean and base,
  That hath not noble lustre in your eyes.
  I see you stand like greyhounds in the slips,
  Straining upon the start. The game's afoot;
  Follow your spirit: and, upon this charge,
  Cry—God for Harry! England! and Saint George!


* * * * *


  A steed! a steed of matchlesse speed,
    A sword of metal keene!
  All else to noble heartes is drosse,
    All else on earth is meaue.
  The neighyinge of the war-horse prowde,
    The rowlinge of the drum,
  The clangor of the trumpet lowde,
    Be soundes from heaven that come;
  And oh! the thundering presse of knightes,
    Whenas their war-cryes swell,
  May tole from heaven an angel bright,
    And rouse a fiend from hell.

  Then mounte! then mounte, brave gallants all,
    And don your helmes amaine;
  Deathe's couriers, fame and honor, call
    Us to the field againe.
  No shrewish feares shall fill our eye
    When the sword-hilt's in our hand—
  Heart-whole we'll part, and no whit sighe
    For the fayrest of the land;
  Let piping swaine, and craven wight,
    Thus weepe and puling crye;
  Our business is like men to fight,
    And hero-like to die!


* * * * *


  King Charles, and who'll do him right now?
  King Charles, and who's ripe for fight now?
  Give a rouse: here's, in hell's despite now,
  King Charles!

  Who gave me the goods that went since?
  Who raised me the house that sank once?
  Who helped me to gold I spent since?
  Who found me in wine you drank once?


  King Charles, and who'll do him right now?
  King Charles, and who's ripe for fight now?
  Give a rouse: here's, in hell's despite now,
  King Charles

  To whom used my boy George quaff else,
  By the old fool's side that begot him?
  For whom did he cheer and laugh else,
  While Noll's damned troopers shot him?


  King Charles, and who'll do him right now?
  King Charles, and who's ripe for fight now?
  Give a rouse: here's, in hell's despite now,
  King Charles!


* * * * *


[June, 1645.]


  O, wherefore come ye forth, in triumph from the north,
  With your hands and your feet and your raiment all red?
  And wherefore doth your rout send forth a joyous shout?
  And whence be the grapes of the wine-press that ye tread?

  O, evil was the root, and bitter was the fruit,
  And crimson was the juice of the vintage that we trod:
  For we trampled on the throng of the haughty and the strong,
  Who sate in the high places and slew the saints of God.

  It was about the noon of a glorious day of June,
  That we saw their banners dance and their cuirasses shine,
  And the man of blood was there, with his long essenced hair,
  And Astley, and Sir Marmaduke, and Rupert of the Rhine.

  Like a servant of the Lord, with his Bible and his sword,
  The General rode along us to form us to the fight;
  When a murmuring sound broke out, and swelled into a shout
  Among the godless horsemen upon the tyrant's right.

  And hark! like the roar of the billows on the shore,
  The cry of battle rises along their charging line!
  For God! for the cause!—for the Church! for the laws!
  For Charles, king of England, and Rupert of the Rhine!

  The furious German comes, with his clarions and his drums,
  His bravoes of Alsatia, and pages of Whitehall;
  They are bursting on our flanks. Grasp your pikes! Close your ranks!
  For Rupert never comes but to conquer, or to fall.

  They are here! They rush on! We are broken! We are gone!
  Our left is borne before them like stubble on the blast.
  O Lord, put forth thy might! O Lord, defend the right!
  Stand back to back, in God's name! and fight it to the last!

  Stout Skippon hath a wound; the centre hath given ground:
  Hark! hark! what means the trampling of horsemen on our rear?
  Whose banner do I see, boys? 'Tis he! thank God! 'tis he, boys!
  Bear up another minute! Brave Oliver is here.

  Their heads all stooping low, their points all in a row,
  Like a whirlwind on the trees, like a deluge on the dikes,
  Our cuirassiers have burst on the ranks of the Accurst,
  And at a shock have scattered the forest of his pikes.

  Fast, fast the gallants ride, in some safe nook to hide
  Their coward heads, predestined to rot on Temple Bar;
  And he,—he turns, he flies:—shame on those cruel eyes
  That bore to look on torture, and dare not look on war!

  Ho! comrades, scour the plain; and, ere ye strip the slain,
  First give another stab to make your search secure;
  Then shake from sleeves and pockets their broadpieces and lockets,
  The tokens of the wanton, the plunder of the poor.

  Fools! your doublets shone with gold, and your hearts were gay and bold,
  When you kissed your lily hands to your lemans to-day;
  And to-morrow shall the fox, from her chambers in the rocks,
  Lead forth her tawny cubs to howl above the prey.

  Where be your tongues that late mocked at heaven and hell and fate?
  And the fingers that once were so busy with your blades,
  Your perfumed satin clothes, your catches and your oaths!
  Your stage-plays and your sonnets, your diamonds and your spades?

  Down! down! forever down, with the mitre and the crown!
  With the Belial of the court, and the Mammon of the Pope!
  There is woe in Oxford halls; there is wail in Durham's stalls;
  The Jesuit smites his bosom; the bishop rends his cope.

  And she of the seven hills shall mourn her children's ills,
  And tremble when she thinks on the edge of England's sword;
  And the kings of earth in fear shall shudder when they hear
  What the hand of God hath wrought for the Houses and the Word!


* * * * *


  This I got on the day that Goring
  Fought through York, like a wild beast roaring—
  The roofs were black, and the streets were full,
  The doors built up with packs of wool;
  But our pikes made way through a storm of shot,
  Barrel to barrel till locks grew hot;
  Frere fell dead, and Lucas was gone,
  But the drum still beat and the flag went on.

  This I caught from a swinging sabre,
  All I had from a long night's labor;
  When Chester[A] flamed, and the streets were red,
  In splashing shower fell the molten lead,
  The fire sprang up, and the old roof split,
  The fire-ball burst in the middle of it;
  With a clash and a clang the troopers they ran,
  For the siege was over ere well began.

  This I got from a pistol butt
  (Lucky my head's not a hazel nut);
  The horse they raced, and scudded and swore;
  There were Leicestershire gantlemen, seventy score;
  Up came the "Lobsters," covered with steel—
  Down we went with a stagger and reel;
  Smash at the flag, I tore it to rag.
  And carried it off in my foraging bag.

[Footnote A: Siege of Chester, in the civil war, 1645.]


* * * * *


[May 11, 1745.]

  Thrice at the huts of Fontenoy the English column failed,
  And twice the lines of Saint Antoine the Dutch in vain assailed;
  For town and slope were filled with fort and flanking battery,
  And well they swept the English ranks and Dutch auxiliary.
  As vainly through De Barri's wood the British soldiers burst,
  The French artillery drove them back diminished and dispersed.
  The bloody Duke of Cumberland beheld with anxious eye,
  And ordered up his last reserve, his latest chance to try.
  On Fontenoy, on Fontenoy, how fast his generals ride!
  And mustering came his chosen troops like clouds at eventide.

  Six thousand English veterans in stately column tread;
  Their cannon blaze in front and flank, Lord Hay is at their head.
  Steady they step adown the slopes, steady they mount the hill,
  Steady they load, steady they fire, moving right onward still,
  Betwixt the wood and Fontenoy, as through a furnace-blast,
  Through rampart, trench, and palisade, and bullets showering fast;
  And on the open plain above they rose and kept their course,
  With ready fire and grim resolve that mocked at hostile force.
  Past Fontenoy, past Fontenoy, while thinner grow their ranks,
  They break as breaks the Zuyder Zee through Holland's ocean-banks.

  More idly than the summer flies, French tirailleurs rush round;
  As stubble to the lava-tide, French squadrons strew the ground;
  Bombshells and grape and round-shot tore, still on they marched and
  Fast from each volley grenadier and voltigeur retired.
  "Push on my household cavalry," King Louis madly cried.
  To death they rush, but rude their shock, not unavenged they died.
  On through the camp the column trod—King Louis turned his rein.
  "Not yet, my liege," Saxe interposed; "the Irish troops remain."
  And Fontenoy, famed Fontenoy, had been a Waterloo,
  Had not these exiles ready been, fresh, vehement, and true.

  "Lord Clare," he said, "you have your wish; there are your Saxon foes!"
  The Marshal almost smiles to see how furiously he goes.
  How fierce the look these exiles wear, who're wont to be so gay!
  The treasured wrongs of fifty years are in their hearts to-day:
  The treaty broken ere the ink wherewith 'twas writ could dry;
  Their plundered homes, their ruined shrines, their women's parting cry;
  Their priesthood hunted down like wolves, their country overthrown—
  Each looks as if revenge for all were staked on him alone.
  On Fontenoy, on Fontenoy, nor ever yet elsewhere,
  Rushed on to fight a nobler band than these proud exiles were.

  O'Brien's voice is hoarse with joy, as, halting, he commands:
  "Fix bayonets—charge!" Like mountain-storm rush on those fiery bands.
  Thin is the English column now, and faint their volleys grow,
  Yet mustering all the strength they have, they make a gallant show.
  They dress their ranks upon the hill, to face that battle-wind!
  Their bayonets the breakers' foam, like rocks the men behind!
  One volley crashes from their line, when through the surging smoke,
  With empty guns clutched in their hands, the headlong Irish broke.
  On Fontenoy, on Fontenoy, hark to that fierce huzza!
  "Revenge! remember Limerick! dash down the Sacsanagh!"

  Like lions leaping at a fold, when mad with hunger's pang,
  Right up against the English line the Irish exiles sprang;
  Bright was their steel, 'tis bloody now, their guns are filled with
  Through scattered ranks and severed files and trampled flags they tore.
  The English strove with desperate strength, paused, rallied, scattered,
  The green hillside is matted close with dying and with dead.
  Across the plain and far away passed on that hideous wrack,
  While cavalier and fantassin dash in upon their track.
  On Fontenoy, on Fontenoy, like eagles in the sun,
  With bloody plumes the Irish stand—the field is fought and won!


* * * * *


[April 2, 1801.]

  Of Nelson and the north
    Sing the glorious day's renown,
  When to battle fierce came forth
    All the might of Denmark's crown,
  And her arms along the deep proudly shone;
    By each gun the lighted brand
    In a bold determined hand,
    And the prince of all the land
  Led them on.

  Like leviathans afloat
    Lay their bulwarks on the brine;
  While the sign of battle flew
    On the lofty British line—
  It was ten of April morn by the chime.
    As they drifted on their path
    There was silence deep as death;
    And the boldest held his breath
  For a time.

  But the might of England flushed
    To anticipate the scene;
  And her van the fleeter rushed
    O'er the deadly space between.
  "Hearts of oak!" our captain cried; when each gun
    From its adamantine lips
    Spread a death-shade round the ships,
    Like the hurricane eclipse
  Of the sun.

  Again! again! again!
    And the havoc did not slack,
  Till a feeble cheer the Dane
    To our cheering sent us back;
  Their shots along the deep slowly boom—
    Then ceased—and all is wail,
    As they strike the shattered sail,
    Or in conflagration pale,
  Light the gloom.

  Out spoke the victor then,
    As he hailed them o'er the wave:
  "Ye are brothers! ye are men!
    And we conquer but to save;
  So peace instead of death let us bring;
    But yield, proud foe, thy fleet,
    With the crews, at England's feet,
    And make submission meet
  To our king."

  Then Denmark blessed our chief,
    That he gave her wounds repose;
  And the sounds of joy and grief
    From her people wildly rose,
  As death withdrew his shades from the day.
    While the sun looked smiling bright
    O'er a wide and woful sight,
    Where the fires of funeral light
  Died away.

  Now joy, old England, raise!
    For the tidings of thy might,
  By the festal cities' blaze,
    Whilst the wine-cup shines in light;
  And yet, amidst that joy and uproar,
    Let us think of them that sleep
    Full many a fathom deep,
    By thy wild and stormy steep,

  Brave hearts! to Britain's pride
    Once so faithful and so true,
  On the deck of fame that died,
    With the gallant good Riou—
  Soft sigh the winds of heaven o'er their grave!
    While the billow mournful rolls,
    And the mermaid's song condoles,
    Singing glory to the souls
  Of the brave!


* * * * *


[Corunna, Spain, January 16, 1809.]

  Not a drum was heard, not a funeral note,
    As his corse to the rampart we hurried;
  Not a soldier discharged his farewell shot
    O'er the grave where our hero we buried.

  We buried him darkly, at dead of night,
    The sods with our bayonets turning;
  By the struggling moonbeams' misty light,
    And the lanthorn dimly burning.

  No useless coffin enclosed his breast,
    Not in sheet or in shroud we wound him;
  But he lay, like a warrior taking his rest,
    With his martial cloak around him.

  Few and short were the prayers we said,
    And we spoke not a word of sorrow;
  But we steadfastly gazed on the face that was dead,
    And we bitterly thought of the morrow.

  We thought, as we hollowed his narrow bed,
    And smoothed down his lonely pillow.
  That the foe and the stranger would tread o'er his head,
    And we far away on the billow!

  Lightly they'll talk of the spirit that's gone,
    And o'er his cold ashes upbraid him,
  But little he'll reck, if they let him sleep on
    In the grave where a Briton has laid him!

  But half of our heavy task was done,
    When the clock struck the hour for retiring;
  And we heard the distant and random gun
    That the foe was sullenly firing.

  Slowly and sadly we laid him down,
    From the field of his fame fresh and gory;
  We carved not a line, and we raised not a stone—
    But we left him alone with his glory.


* * * * *


  It was a Sergeant old and gray,
     Well singed and bronzed from siege and pillage,
  Went tramping in an army's wake
     Along the turnpike of the village.

  For days and nights the winding host
     Had through the little place been marching,
  And ever loud the rustics cheered,
     Till every throat was hoarse and parching.

  The Squire and Farmer, maid and dame,
     All took the sight's electric stirring,
  And hats were waved and staves were sung,
     And kerchiefs white were countless whirring.

  They only saw a gallant show
     Of heroes stalwart under banners,
  And, in the fierce heroic glow,
    'Twas theirs to yield but wild hosannas.

  The Sergeant heard the shrill hurrahs,
     Where he behind in step was keeping;
  But glancing down beside the road
     He saw a little maid sit weeping.

  "And how is this?" he gruffly said,
     A moment pausing to regard her;—
  "Why weepest thou, my little chit?"
     And then she only cried the harder.

  "And how is this, my little chit?"
    The sturdy trooper straight repeated,
  "When all the village cheers us on,
    That you, in tears, apart are seated?

  "We march two hundred thousand strong,
    And that's a sight, my baby beauty,
  To quicken silence into song
    And glorify the soldier's duty."

  "It's very, very grand, I know,"
    The little maid gave soft replying;
  "And Father, Mother, Brother too,
    All say 'Hurrah' while I am crying;

  "But think—O Mr. Soldier, think,—
    How many little sisters' brothers
  Are going all away to fight
    And may be killed, as well as others!"

  "Why, bless thee, child," the Sergeant said,
    His brawny hand her curls caressing,
  "'Tis left for little ones like thee
    To find that War's not all a blessing."

  And "Bless thee!" once again he cried;
    Then cleared his throat and looked indignant,
  And marched away with wrinkled brow
    To stop the struggling tear benignaut.

  And still the ringing shouts went up
    From doorway, thatch, and fields of tillage;
  The pall behind the standard seen
    By one alone of all the village.

  The oak and cedar bend and writhe
    When roars the wind through gap and braken;
  But 'tis the tenderest reed of all
    That trembles first when Earth is shaken.


* * * * *


[June 15, 1815.]


    There was a sound of revelry by night,
    And Belgium's capital had gathered then
    Her beauty and her chivalry, and bright
    The lamps shone o'er fair women and brave men;
    A thousand hearts beat happily; and when
    Music arose with its voluptuous swell,
    Soft eyes looked love to eyes which spake again,
    And all went merry as a marriage-bell;
  But hush! hark! a deep sound strikes like a rising knell!

    Did ye not hear it?—No; 'twas but the wind,
    Or the car rattling o'er the stony street;
    On with the dance! let joy be unconfined!
    No sleep till morn, when Youth and Pleasure meet
    To chase the glowing Hours with flying feet,—
    But hark!—that heavy sound breaks in once more,
    As if the clouds its echo would repeat;
    And nearer, clearer, deadlier than before!
  Arm! arm! it is—it is—the cannon's opening roar!

    Within a windowed niche of that high hall
    Sate Brunswick's fated chieftain; he did hear
    That sound the first amidst the festival,
    And caught its tone with Death's prophetic ear;
    And when they smiled because he deemed it near,
    His heart more truly knew that peal too well
    Which stretched his father on a bloody bier,
    And roused the vengeance blood alone could quell:
  He rushed into the field, and, foremost fighting, fell.

    Ah! then and there was hurrying to and fro,
    And gathering tears, and tremblings of distress,
    And cheeks all pale which but an hour ago
    Blushed at the praise of their own loveliness;
    And there were sudden partings, such as press
    The life from out young hearts, and choking sighs
    Which ne'er might be repeated: who would guess
    If evermore should meet those mutual eyes
  Since upon night so sweet such awful morn could rise!

    And there was mounting in hot haste: the steed,
    The mustering squadron, and the clattering car,
    Went pouring forward with impetuous speed,
    And swiftly forming in the ranks of war;
    And the deep thunder peal on peal afar;
    And near, the beat of the alarming drum
    Roused up the soldier ere the morning star;
    While thronged the citizens with terror dumb,
  Or whispering with white lips,—"The foe! they come! they come!"

    And wild and high the "Cameron's gathering" rose,
    The war-note of Lochiel, which Albyn's hills
    Have heard,—and heard, too, have her Saxon foes:
    How in the noon of night that pibroch thrills
    Savage and shrill! But with the breath which fills
    Their mountain pipe, so fill the mountaineers
    With the fierce native daring which instills
    The stirring memory of a thousand years,
  And Evan's, Donald's fame, rings in each clansman's ears!

    And Ardennes waves above them her green leaves,
    Dewy with nature's tear-drops, as they pass,
    Grieving, if aught inanimate e'er grieves,
    Over the unreturning brave,—alas!
    Ere evening to be trodden like the grass
    Which now beneath them, but above shall grow
    In its next verdure, when this fiery mass
    Of living valor, rolling on the foe,
  And burning with high hope, shall moulder cold and low.

    Last noon beheld them full of lusty life,
    Last eve in Beauty's circle proudly gay,
    The midnight brought the signal sound of strife,
    The morn the marshalling in arms,—the day
    Battle's magnificently stern array!
    The thunder-clouds close o'er it, which when rent
    The earth is covered thick with other clay,
    Which her own clay shall cover, heaped and pent,
  Rider and horse,—friend, foe,—in one red burial blent!

    Their praise is hymned by loftier harps than mine;
    Yet one I would select from that proud throng,
    Partly because they blend me with his line,
    And partly that I did his sire some wrong,
    And partly that bright names will hallow song!
    And his was of the bravest, and when showered
    The death-bolts deadliest the thinned files along,
    Even where the thickest of war's tempest lowered,
  They reached no nobler breast than thine, young, gallant Howard!

    There have been tears and breaking hearts for thee,
    And mine were nothing, had I such to give;
    But when I stood beneath the fresh green tree,
    Which living waves where thou didst cease to live,
    And saw around me the wide field revive
    With fruits and fertile promise, and the Spring
    Come forth her work of gladness to contrive,
    With all her reckless birds upon the wing,
  I turned from all she brought to those she could not bring.

    I turned to thee, to thousands, of whom each
    And one as all a ghastly gap did make
    In his own kind and kindred, whom to teach
    Forgetfulness were mercy for their sake;
    The Archangel's trump, not glory's, must awake
    Those whom they thirst for; though the sound of Fame
    May for a moment soothe, it cannot slake
    The fever of vain longing, and the name
  So honored but assumes a stronger, bitterer claim.

    They mourn, but smile at length; and, smiling, mourn:
    The tree will wither long before it fall;
    The hull drives on, though mast and sail be torn;
    The roof-tree sinks, but moulders on the hall
    In massy hoariness; the ruined wall
    Stands when its wind-worn battlements are gone;
    The bars survive the captive they enthrall;
    The day drags through though storms keep out the sun;
  And thus the heart will break, yet brokenly live on;

    Even as a broken mirror, which the glass
    In every fragment multiplies, and makes
    A thousand images of one that was
    The same, and still the more, the more it breaks;
    And thus the heart will do which not forsakes,
    Living in shattered guise, and still, and cold,
    And bloodless, with its sleepless sorrow aches,
    Yet withers on till all without is old,
  Showing no visible sign, for such things are untold.


* * * * *


[September 20, 1854,]

  Willie, fold your little hands;
    Let it drop,—that "soldier" toy;
  Look where father's picture stands,—
    Father, that here kissed his boy
  Not a mouth since,—father kind,
  Who this night may (never mind
  Mother's sob, my Willie dear)
  Cry out loud that He may hear
  Who is God of battles,—cry,
  "God keep father safe this day
      By the Alma River!"

  Ask no more, child. Never heed
    Either Russ, or Frank, or Turk;
  Right of nations, trampled creed,
    Chance-poised victory's bloody work;
  Any flag i' the wind may roll
  On thy heights, Sevastopol!
  Willie, all to you and me
  Is that spot, whate'er it be,
  Where he stands—no other word—
  Stands—God sure the child's prayers heard—
      Near the Alma River.

  Willie, listen to the bells
    Ringing in the town to-day;
  That's for victory. No knell swells
    For the many swept away,—
  Hundreds, thousands. Let us weep,
  We, who need not,—just to keep
  Reason clear in thought and brain
  Till the morning comes again;
  Till the third dread morning tell
  Who they were that fought and—fell
      By the Alma River.

  Come, we'll lay us down, my child;
    Poor the bed is,—poor and hard;
  But thy father, far exiled,
    Sleeps upon the open sward,
  Dreaming of us two at home;
  Or, beneath the starry dome,
  Digs out trenches in the dark,
  Where he buries—Willie, mark!—
  Where he buries those who died
  Fighting—fighting at his side—
      By the Alma River.

  Willie, Willie, go to sleep;
    God will help us, O my boy!
  He will make the dull hours creep
    Faster, and send news of joy;
  When I need not shrink to meet
  Those great placards in the street,
  That for weeks will ghastly stare
  In some eyes—child, say that prayer
  Once again,—a different one,—
  Say, "O God! Thy will be done
      By the Alma River."


* * * * *


[October 25, 1854.]

  Half a league, half a league,
    Half a league onward.
  All in the valley of Death
    Rode the six hundred.
  "Forward, the Light Brigade!
  Charge for the guns!" he said;
  Into the valley of Death
    Rode the six hundred.

  "Forward, the Light Brigade!"
  Was there a man dismayed?
  Not though the soldier knew
    Some one had blundered:
  Theirs not to make reply,
  Theirs not to reason why.
  Theirs but to do and die:
  Into the valley of Death
    Rode the six hundred.

  Cannon to right of them,
  Cannon to left of them,
  Cannon in front of them
    Volleyed and thundered;
  Stormed at with shot and shell,
  Boldly they rode and well;
  Into the jaws of Death,
  Into the mouth of Hell,
    Rode the six hundred.

  Flashed all their sabres bare,
  Flashed as they turned in air,
  Sabring the gunners there,
  Charging an army, while
    All the world wondered:
  Plunged in the battery-smoke,
  Right through the line they broke:
  Cossack and Russian
  Reeled from the sabre-stroke,
    Shattered and sundered.
  Then they rode back, but not—
    Not the six hundred.

  Cannon to right of them,
  Cannon to left of them,
  Cannon behind them
    Volleyed and thundered:
  Stormed at with shot and shell,
  While horse and hero fell,
  They that had fought so well
  Came through the jaws of Death
  Back from the mouth of Hell,—
  All that was left of them,
    Left of six hundred.

  When can their glory fade?
  O the wild charge they made!
    All the world wondered.
  Honor the charge they made!
  Honor the Light Brigade,
    Noble six hundred!


* * * * *


[September 25, 1857.]

  O, that last day in Lucknow fort!
    We knew that it was the last;
  That the enemy's lines crept surely on.
    And the end was coming fast.

  To yield to that foe meant worse than death;
    And the men and we all worked on;
  It was one day more of smoke and roar,
    And then it would all be done.

  There was one of us, a corporal's wife,
    A fair, young, gentle thing,
  Wasted with fever in the siege.
    And her mind was wandering.

  She lay on the ground, in her Scottish plaid,
    And I took her head on my knee;
  "When my father comes hame frae the pleugh," she said,
    "Oh! then please wauken me."

  She slept like a child on her father's floor,
    In the flecking of woodbine-shade,
  When the house-dog sprawls by the open door,
    And the mother's wheel is stayed.

  It was smoke and roar and powder-stench,
    And hopeless waiting for death;
  And the soldier's wife, like a full-tired child,
    Seemed scarce to draw her breath.

  I sank to sleep; and I had my dream
    Of an English village-lane.
  And wall and garden;—but one wild scream
    Brought me back to the roar again.

  There Jessie Brown stood listening
    Till a sudden gladness broke
  All over her face; and she caught my hand
    And drew me near as she spoke:—

  "The Hielanders! O, dinna ye hear
    The slogan far awa,
  The McGregor's?—O, I ken it weel;
    It's the grandest o' them a'!

  "God bless thae bonny Hielanders!
    We're saved! we're saved!" she cried;
  And fell on her knees; and thanks to God
    Flowed forth like a full flood-tide.

  Along the battery-line her cry
    Had fallen among the men,
  And they started back;—they were there to die;
    But was life so near them, then?

  They listened for life; the rattling fire
    Far off, and the far-off roar,
  Were all; and the colonel shook his head,
    And they turned to their guns once more.

  But Jessie said, "The slogan's done;
    But winna ye hear it noo,
  The Campbells are comin'? It's no' a dream;
    Our succors hae broken through!"

  We heard the roar and the rattle afar,
    But the pipes we could not hear;
  So the men plied their work of hopeless war
    And knew that the end was near.

  It was not long ere it made its way,—
    A thrilling, ceaseless sound:
  It was no noise from the strife afar,
    Or the sappers under ground.

  It was the pipes of the Highlanders!
    And now they played Auld Lang Syne;
  It came to our men like the voice of God,
    And they shouted along the line.

  And they wept, and shook one another's hands,
    And the women sobbed in a crowd;
  And every one knelt down where he stood,
    And we all thanked God aloud.

  That happy day, when we welcomed them,
    Our men put Jessie first;
  And the general gave her his hand, and cheers
    Like a storm from the soldiers burst.

  And the pipers' ribbons and tartan streamed,
    Marching round and round our line;
  And our joyful cheers were broken with tears,
    As the pipes played Auld Long Syne.


* * * * *


  "What are the bugles blowin' for?" said Files-on-Parade.
  "To turn you out, to turn you out," the Color-Sergeant said.
  "What makes you look so white, so white?" said Files-on-Parade.
  "I'm dreadin' what I've got to watch," the Color-Sergeant said.
      For they're hangin' Danny Deever, you can hear the Dead March play,
      The regiment's in 'ollow square—they're hangin' him to-day;
      They've taken of his buttons off an' cut his stripes away,
      An' they're hangin' Danny Deever in the mornin'.

  "What makes the rear-rank breathe so 'ard?" said Files-on-Parade.
  "It's bitter cold, it's bitter cold," the Color-Sergeant said.
  "What makes that front-rank man fall down?" says Files-on-Parade.
  "A touch o' sun, a touch o' sun," the Color-Sergeant said.
      They are hangin' Danny Deever, they are marchin' of 'im round,
      They 'ave 'alted Danny Deever by 'is coffin on the ground;
      An' 'e'll swing in 'arf a minute for a sneakin' shootin' hound—
      O they're hangin' Danny Deever in the mornin'!

  "'Is cot was right-'and cot to mine," said Files-on-Parade.
  "'E's sleepin' out an' far to-night," the Color-Sergeant said.
  "I've drunk 'is beer a score o' times," said Files-on-Parade.
  "'E's drinkin' bitter beer alone," the Color-Sergeant said.
      They are hangin' Danny Deever, you must mark 'im to 'is place,
      For 'e shot a comrade sleepin'—you must look 'im in the face;
      Nine 'undred of 'is county an' the regiment's disgrace,
      While they're hangin' Danny Deever in the mornin'.

  "What's that so black agin the sun?" said Files-on-Parade.
  "It's Danny fightin' 'ard for life," the Color-Sergeant said.
  "What's that that whimpers over'ead?" said Files-on-Parade.
  "It's Danny's soul that's passin' now," the Color-Sergeant said.
      For they're done with Danny Deever, you can 'ear the quickstep play,
      The regiment's in column, an' they're marchin' us away;
      Ho! the young recruits are shakin', an' they'll want their beer
      After hangin' Danny Deever in the mornin'.


* * * * *


  Where are the men who went forth in the morning,
    Hope brightly beaming in every face?
  Fearing no danger,—the Saxon foe scorning,—
    Little thought they of defeat or disgrace!
  Fallen is their chieftain—his glory departed—
    Fallen are the heroes who fought by his side!
  Fatherless children now weep, broken-hearted,
    Mournfully wandering by Rhuddlan's dark tide!

  Small was the band that escaped from the slaughter,
    Flying for life as the tide 'gan to flow;
  Hast thou no pity, thou dark rolling water?
    More cruel still than the merciless foe!
  Death is behind them, and death is before them;
    Faster and faster rolls on the dark wave;
  One wailing cry—and the sea closes o'er them;
    Silent and deep is their watery grave.

From the Welsh of TALIESSIN,
Translation of THOMAS OLIPHANT

* * * * *


[About 1307.]

  For Scotland's and for freedom's right
    The Bruce his part had played,
  In five successive fields of fight
    Been conquered and dismayed;
  Once more against the English host
  His band he led, and once more lost
    The meed for which he fought;
  And now from battle, faint and worn,
  The homeless fugitive forlorn
    A hut's lone shelter sought.

  And cheerless was that resting-place
    For him who claimed a throne:
  His canopy, devoid of grace,
    The rude, rough beams alone;
  The heather couch his only bed,—
  Yet well I ween had slumber fled
    From couch of eider-down!
  Through darksome night till dawn of day,
  Absorbed in wakeful thoughts he lay
    Of Scotland and her crown.

  The sun rose brightly, and its gleam
    Fell on that hapless bed,
  And tinged with light each shapeless beam
    Which roofed the lowly shed;
  When, looking up with wistful eye,
  The Bruce beheld a spider try
    His filmy thread to fling
  From beam to beam of that rude cot;
  And well the insect's toilsome lot
    Taught Scotland's future king.

  Six times his gossamery thread
    The wary spider threw;
  In vain the filmy line was sped,
    For powerless or untrue
  Each aim appeared, and back recoiled
  The patient insect, six times foiled,
    And yet unconquered still;
  And soon the Bruce, with eager eye,
  Saw him prepare once more to try
    His courage, strength, and skill.

  One effort more, his seventh and last—
    The hero hailed the sign!—
  And on the wished-for beam hung fast
    That slender, silken line!
  Slight as it was, his spirit caught
  The more than omen, for his thought
    The lesson well could trace,
  Which even "he who runs may read,"
  That Perseverance gains its meed,
    And Patience wins the race.


* * * * *


[June 24, 1314.]

  Scots, wha hae wi' Wallace bled,
  Scots, wham Bruce has aften led;
  Welcome to your gory bed,
     Or to victorie.

  Now's the day, and now's the hour
  See the front o' battle lour:
  See approach proud Edward's power,—
     Chains and slaverie!

  Wha will be a traitor knave?
  Wha can fill a coward's grave?
  Wha sae base as be a slave?
     Let him turn and flee!

  Wha for Scotland's king and law
  Freedom's sword will strongly draw,
  Freeman stand, or freeman fa'?
     Let him follow me!

  By Oppression's woes and pains!
  By our sons in servile chains,
  We will drain our dearest veins,
     But they shall be free!

  Lay the proud usurpers low!
  Tyrants fall in every foe!
  Liberty's in every blow!
     Let us do, or die!


* * * * *



    Loud a hundred clansmen raise
    Their voices in their chieftain's praise.
    Each boatman, bending to his oar,
    With measured sweep the burthen bore,
    In such wild cadence, as the breeze
    Makes through December's leafless trees.
    The chorus first could Allen know,
    "Roderigh Vich Alpine, ho! ieroe!"
    And near, and nearer, as they rowed,
    Distinct the martial ditty flowed.

  Hail to the Chief who in triumph advances!
    Honored and blessed be the evergreen Pine!
  Long may the tree, in his banner that glances,
    Flourish, the shelter and grace of our line!
        Heaven send it happy dew,
        Earth lend it sap anew,
    Gayly to bourgeon, and broadly to grow,
        While every Highland glen
        Sends our shouts back again,
    "Roderigh Vich Alpine dhu, ho! ieroe!"

  Ours is no sapling chance-sown by the fountain.
    Blooming at Beltane, in winter to fade;
  When the whirlwind has stripped every leaf on the mountain,
    The more shall Clan-Alpine exult in her shade.
        Moored in the rifted rock,
        Proof to the tempest's shock,
    Firmer he roots him the ruder it blow;
        Menteith and Breadalbane, then,
        Echo his praise again,
    "Roderigh Vich Alpine dhu, ho! ieroe!"

  Proudly our pibroch has thrilled in Glen Fruin,
    And Bannachar's groans to our slogan replied;
  Glen Luss and Ross-dhu, they are smoking in ruin,
    And the best of Loch-Lomond lie dead on her side.
        Widow and Saxon maid
        Long shall lament our raid,
    Think of Clan-Alpine with fear and with woe;
        Lennox and Leven-glen
        Shake when they hear again,
    "Roderigh Vich Alpine dhu, ho! ieroe!"

  Row, vassals, row, for the pride of the Highlands!
    Stretch to your oars for the evergreen Pine!
  O that the rosebud that graces yon islands
    Were wreathed in a garland around him to twine!
        O that some seedling gem,
        Worthy such noble stem,
  Honored and blessed in their shadow might grow!
        Loud should Clan-Alpine then
        Ring from the deepmost glen,
    "Roderigh Vich Alpine dhu, ho! ieroe!"


* * * * *




  There is no breeze upon the fern,
    No ripple on the lake,
  Upon her eyrie nods the erne,
    The deer has sought the brake;
  The small birds will not sing aloud,
    The springing trout lies still,
  So darkly glooms yon thunder-cloud,
  That swathes, as with a purple shroud,
    Benledi's distant hill.
  Is it the thunder's solemn sound
    That mutters deep and dread,
  Or echoes from the groaning ground
    The warrior's measured tread?
  Is it the lightning's quivering glance
    That on the thicket streams,
  Or do they flash on spear and lance
    The sun's retiring beams?
  I see the dagger crest of Mar,
    I see the Moray's silver star
  Wave o'er the cloud of Saxon war,
    That up the lake comes winding far!
  To hero bound for battle strife,
    Or bard of martial lay,
  'Twere worth ten years of peaceful life,
    One glance at their array!

  Their light-armed archers far and near
    Surveyed the tangled ground,
  Their centre ranks, with pike and spear,
    A twilight forest frowned,
  Their barbèd horsemen, in the rear,
    The stern battalia crowned.
  No cymbal clashed, no clarion rang,
    Still were the pipe and drum;
  Save heavy tread, and armor's clang,
    The sullen march was dumb.
  There breathed no wind their crests to shake,
    Or wave their flags abroad;
  Scarce the frail aspen seemed to quake,
    That shadowed o'er their road.
  Their vaward scouts no tidings bring,
    Can rouse no lurking foe,
  Nor spy a trace of living thing,
    Save when they stirred the roe;
  The host moves like a deep sea wave,
  Where rise no rocks its pride to brave,
    High swelling, dark, and slow.
  The lake is passed, and now they gain
  A narrow and a broken plain,
  Before the Trosach's rugged jaws;
  And here the horse and spearmen pause,
  While, to explore the dangerous glen,
  Dive through the pass the archer men.

  At once there rose so wild a yell
  Within that dark and narrow dell.
  As all the fiends, from heaven that fell,
  Had pealed the banner cry of hell!
  Forth from the pass in tumult driven,
  Like chaff before the winds of heaven,
    The archery appear:
  For life! for life! their flight they ply—
  And shriek, and shout, and battle-cry,
  And plaids and bonnets waving high,
  And broadswords flashing to the sky,
    Are maddening in the rear.
  Onward they drive, in dreadful race,
    Pursuers and pursued;
  Before that tide of flight and chase,
  How shall it keep its rooted place,
    The spearmen's twilight wood?
  —"Down, down," cried Mar, "your lances down!
    Bear back both friend and foe!"
  Like reeds before the tempest's frown,
  That serried grove of lances brown
    At once lay levelled low;
  And closely shouldering side to side,
  The bristling ranks the onset bide.—
  —"We'll quell the savage mountaineer,
    As their Tinchel[A] cows the game;
  They come as fleet as forest deer,
    We'll drive them back as tame."

  Bearing before them, in their course,
  The relics of the archer force,
  Like wave with crest of sparkling foam,
  Right onward did Clan-Alpine come.
  Above the tide, each broadsword bright
  Was brandishing like beam of light,
    Each targe was dark below;
  And with the ocean's mighty swing,
  When heaving to the tempest's wing,
    They hurled them on the foe.

  I heard the lance's shivering crash,
  As when the whirlwind rends the ash;
  I heard the broadsword's deadly clang,
  As if a hundred anvils rang!
  But Moray wheeled his rearward flank—
  Of horsemen on Clan-Alpine's flank—
    "My bannerman, advance!
  I see," he cried, "their columns shake.
  Now, gallants! for your ladies' sake,
    Upon them with the lance!"
  The horsemen dashed among the rout,
    As deer break through the broom;
  Their steeds are stout, their swords are out,
    They soon make lightsome room.
  Clan-Alpine's best are backward borne—
    Where, where was Roderick then?
  One blast upon his bugle-horn
    Were worth a thousand men!
  And refluent through the pass of fear
    The battle's tide was poured;
  Vanished the Saxon's struggling spear,
    Vanished the mountain sword.
  As Bracklinn's chasm, so black and steep,
    Receives her roaring linn,
  As the dark caverns of the deep
    Suck the wild whirlpool in,
  So did the deep and darksome pass
  Devour the battle's mingled mass;
  None linger now upon the plain,
  Save those who ne'er shall fight again.

[Footnote A: A circle of sportsmen, surrounding the deer.]


* * * * *


[Footnote A: Pipe-summons, or gathering-song, of Donald the Black.]


  Pibroch of Donuil Dhu,
    Pibroch of Donuil,
  Wake thy wild voice anew,
    Summon Clan Conuil.
  Come away, come away,
    Hark to the summons!
  Come in your war array,
    Gentles and commons.

  Come from deep glen, and
    From mountains so rocky;
  The war-pipe and pennon
    Are at Inverlochy.
  Come every hill-plaid, and
    True heart that wears one,
  Come every steel blade, and
    Strong hand that bears one.

  Leave untended the herd,
    The flock without shelter;
  Leave the corpse uninterred,
    The bride at the altar;
  Leave the deer, leave the steer,
    Leave nets and barges;
  Come with your fighting gear,
    Broadswords and targes.

  Come as the winds come, when
   Forests are rended;
  Come as the waves come, when
   Navies are stranded;
  Faster come, faster come.
   Faster and faster,
  Chief, vassal, page and groom,
   Tenant and master.

  Fast they come, fast they come;
   See how they gather!
  Wide waves the eagle plume
   Blended with heather.
  Cast your plaids, draw your blades,
   Forward each man set!
  Pibroch of Donuil Dhu,
   Knell for the onset!


* * * * *


[September, 1513.]


  A moment then Lord Marmion stayed,
  And breathed his steed, his men arrayed,
    Then forward moved his band,
  Until, Lord Surrey's rear-guard won,
  He halted by a cross of stone,
  That, on a hillock standing lone,
    Did all the field command.

  Hence might they see the full array
  Of either host for deadly fray;
  Their marshalled lines stretched east and west,
    And fronted north and south,
  And distant salutation past
    From the loud cannon-mouth;
  Not in the close successive rattle
  That breathes the voice of modern battle,
    But slow and far between.—
  The hillock gained, Lord Marmion stayed:
  "Here, by this cross," he gently said,
    "You well may view the scene;
  Here shalt thou tarry, lovely Clare:
  O, think of Marmion in thy prayer!—
  Thou wilt not?—well,—no less my care
  Shall, watchful, for thy weal prepare.—
  You, Blount and Eustace, are her guard,
    With ten picked archers of my train;
  With England if the day go hard,
    To Berwick speed amain,—
  But, if we conquer, cruel maid,
  My spoils shall at your feet be laid,
    When here we meet again."
  He waited not for answer there,
  And would not mark the maid's despair,
    Nor heed the discontented look
  From either squire: but spurred amain,
  And, dashing through the battle-plain,
    His way to Surrey took.

* * * * *

  Blount and Fitz-Eustace rested still
  With Lady Clare upon the hill;
  On which (for far the day was spent)
  The western sunbeams now were bent.
  The cry they heard, its meaning knew,
  Could plain their distant comrades view:
  Sadly to Blount did Eustace say,
  "Unworthy office here to stay!
  No hope of gilded spurs to-day.—
  But, see! look up,—on Flodden bent
  The Scottish foe has fired his tent."—
    And sudden, as he spoke,
  From the sharp ridges of the hill,
  All downward to the banks of Till
    Was wreathed in sable smoke.
  Volumed and vast, and rolling far,
  The cloud enveloped Scotland's war,
    As down the hill they broke;
  Nor martial shout, nor minstrel tone,
  Announced their march; their tread alone,
  At times their warning trumpet blown,
    At times a stifled hum,
  Told England, from his mountain-throne
    King James did rushing come.—
  Scarce could they hear or see their foes,
  Until at weapon-point they close.—
  They close in clouds of smoke and dust,
  With sword-sway and with lance's thrust;
    And such a yell was there,
  Of sudden and portentous birth,
  As if men fought upon the earth
   And fiends in upper air:
  O, life and death were in the shout,
  Recoil and rally, charge and rout,
    And triumph and despair.
  Long looked the anxious squires; their eye
  Could in the darkness naught descry.

  At length the freshening western blast
  Aside the shroud of battle cast;
  And, first, the ridge of mingled spears
  Above the brightened cloud appears;
  And in the smoke the pennons flew,
  As in the storm the white sea-mew.
  Then marked they, dashing broad and far,
  The broken billows of the war,
  And plumèd crests of chieftains brave
  Floating like foam upon the wave;
    But naught distinct they see:
  Wide raged the battle on the plain;
  Spears shook, and falchions flashed amain;
  Fell England's arrow-flight like rain;
  Crests rose, and stooped, and rose again,
    Wild and disorderly.
  Amid the scene of tumult, high
  They saw Lord Marmion's falcon fly:
  And stainless Tunstall's banner white,
  And Edmund Howard's lion bright,
  Still bear them bravely in the fight;
    Although against them come
  Of gallant Gordons many a one,
  And many a stubborn Highlandman,
  And many a rugged Border clan,
    With Huntley and with Home.

  Far on the left, unseen the while,
  Stanley broke Lennox and Argyle;
  Though there the western mountaineer
  Rushed with bare bosom on the spear,
  And flung the feeble targe aside,
  And with both hands the broadsword plied,
  'Twas vain:—But Fortune, on the right,
  With fickle smile, cheered Scotland's fight.
  Then fell that spotless banner white,
    The Howard's lion fell;
  Yet still Lord Marmion's falcon flew
  With wavering flight, while fiercer grew
    Around the battle-yell.
  The Border slogan rent the sky!
  A Home! a Gordon! was the cry:
  Loud were the clanging blows;
  Advanced,—forced back,—now low, now high,
    The pennon sunk and rose;
  As bends the bark's mast in the gale,
  When rent are rigging, shrouds, and sail,
    It wavered mid the foes.
  No longer Blount the view could bear:—
  "By heaven and all its saints, I swear,
    I will not see it lost!
  Fitz-Eustace, you with Lady Clare
  May bid your beads, and patter prayer,—
    I gallop to the host."
  And to the fray he rode amain,
  Followed by all the archer train.
  The fiery youth, with desperate charge,
  Made, for a space, an opening large,
    The rescued banner rose.
  But darkly closed the war around.
  Like pine-tree rooted from the ground.
    It sunk among the foes.
  Then Eustace mounted too;—yet stayed,
  As loath to leave the helpless maid,
    When, fast as shaft can fly,
  Bloodshot his eyes, his nostrils spread,
  The loose rein dangling from his head,
  Housing and saddle bloody red,
    Lord Marmion's steed rushed by;
  And Eustace, maddening at the sight,
    A look and sign to Clara cast,
    To mark he would return in haste,
  Then plunged into the fight.

  Ask me not what the maiden feels,
    Left in that dreadful hour alone:
  Perchance her reason stoops or reels;
    Perchance a courage, not her own,
    Braces her mind to desperate tone.—
  The scattered van of England wheels;—
    She only said, as loud in air;
    The tumult roared, "Is Wilton there?"
    They fly, or, maddened by despair,
    Fight but to die,—"Is Wilton there?"
  With that, straight up the hill there rode;
    Two horsemen drenched with gore,
  And in their arms, a helpless load,
    A wounded knight they bore.
  His hand still strained the broken brand;
  His arms were smeared with blood and sand.
  Dragged from among the horses' feet,
  With dinted shield, and helmet beat,
  The falcon-crest and plumage gone,
  Can that be haughty Marmion!…
  Young Blount his armor did unlace,
  And, gazing on his ghastly face,
    Said,—"By Saint George, he's gone!
  That spear-wound has our master sped,—
  And see the deep cut on his head!
    Good night to Marmion."—
  "Unnurtured Blount! thy brawling cease:
  He opes his eyes," said Eustace; "peace!"

  When, doffed his casque, he felt free air,
  Around 'gan Marmion wildly stare:—
  "Where's Harry Blount? Fitz-Eustace where?
  Linger ye here, ye hearts of hare!
  Redeem my pennon,—charge again!
  Cry—'Marmion to the rescue!'—vain!
  Last of my race, on battle-plain
  That shout shall ne'er be heard again!—
  Yet my last thought is England's:—fly,
    To Dacre bear my signet-ring:
    Tell him his squadrons up to bring:—
  Fitz-Eustace, to Lord Surrey hie;
    Tunstall lies dead upon the field,
    His life-blood stains the spotless shield:
    Edmund is down;—my life is reft;—
    The Admiral alone is left.
    Let Stanley charge with spur of fire,—
    With Chester charge, and Lancashire,
    Full upon Scotland's central host,
    Or victory and England's lost.—
    Must I bid twice?—hence, varlets! fly!
    Leave Marmion here alone—to die."
    They parted, and alone he lay:
    Clare drew her from the sight away,
  Till pain rung forth a lowly moan,
  And half he murmured,—"Is there none,
    Of all my halls have nurst.
  Page, squire, or groom, one cup to bring,
  Of blessèd water from the spring,
  To slake my dying thirst?"

  O woman! in our hours of ease,
  Uncertain, coy, and hard to please,
  And variable as the shade
  By the light quivering aspen made;
  When pain and anguish wring the brow,
  A ministering angel thou!—
  Scarce were the piteous accents said,
  When, with the Baron's casque, the maid
    To the nigh streamlet ran;
  Forgot were hatred, wrongs, and fears;
  The plaintive voice alone she hears,
    Sees but the dying man.
  She stooped her by the runnel's side,
    But in abhorrence backward drew;
  For, oozing from the mountain's side,
  Where raged the war, a dark-red tide
    Was curdling in the streamlet blue,
  Where shall she turn!—behold her mark
    A little fountain cell,
  Where water, clear as diamond-spark,
    In a stone basin fell.
  Above, some half-worn letters say,
  Drink : weary : pilgrim : drink : and : pray :
  for : the : kind : soul : of : Sybil : Gray :
    Who : built : this : cross : and : well :
  She filled the helm, and back she hied,
  And with surprise and joy espied
    A monk supporting Marmion's head;
  A pious man whom duty brought
  To dubious verge of battle fought,
    To shrive the dying, bless the dead.

  Deep drank Lord Marmion of the wave,
  And, as she stooped his brow to lave,—
  "Is it the hand of Clare," he said,
  "Or injured Constance, bathes my head?"
    Then, as remembrance rose,—
  "Speak not to me of shrift or prayer!
    I must redress her woes.
  Short space, few words, are mine to spare;
  Forgive and listen, gentle Clare!"—
    "Alas!" she said, "the while.—
  O, think of your immortal weal!
  In vain for Constance is your zeal;
    She—died at Holy Isle."—
  Lord Marmion started from the ground,
  As light as if he felt no wound;
  Though in the action burst the tide
  In torrents from his wounded side.
  "Then it was truth!" he said,—"I knew
  That the dark presage must be true.—
  I would the Fiend, to whom belongs
  The vengeance due to all her wrongs,
    Would spare me but a day!
  For wasting fire, and dying groan,
  And priests slain on the altar stone,
    Might bribe him for delay.
  It may not be!—this dizzy trance,—
  Curse on yon base marauder's lance,
  And doubly cursed my failing brand!
  A sinful heart makes feeble hand."
  Then, fainting, down on earth he sunk,
  Supported by the trembling monk.

  With fruitless labor, Clara bound,
  And strove to stanch the gushing wound:
  The monk, with unavailing cares,
  Exhausted all the Church's prayers.
  Ever, he said, that, close and near,
  A lady's voice was in his ear,
  And that the priest he could not hear,
    For that she ever sung,
  "In the lost battle, borne down by the flying,
  Where mingles war's rattle with groans of the
    So the notes rung:—
  "Avoid thee, Fiend!—with cruel hand,
  Shake not the dying sinner's sand!—
  O, look, my son, upon yon sign
  Of the Redeemer's grace divine:
    O, think on faith and bliss!—
  By many a death-bed I have been,
  And many a sinner's parting seen,
    But never aught like this."

  The war, that for a space did fail,
  Now trebly thundering swelled the gale,
    And STANLEY! was the cry:—
  A light on Marmion's visage spread,
    And fired his glazing eye:
  With dying hand above his head
  He shook the fragment of his blade,
    And shouted "Victory!—
  Charge, Chester, charge! On, Stanley, on!"
  Were the last words of Marmion.


* * * * *


[About 1688.]

  To the lords of convention 'twas Claverhouse spoke,
  "Ere the king's crown shall fall, there are crowns to be broke;
  So let each cavalier who loves honor and me
  Come follow the bonnets of bonnie Dundee!"

  Come fill up my cup, come fill up my can;
  Come saddle your horses, and call up your men;
  Come open the Westport and let us gang free,
  And it's room for the bonnets of bonnie Dundee

  Dundee he is mounted, he rides up the street,
  The bells are rung backward, the drums they are beat;
  But the provost, douce man, said, "Just e'en let him be,
  The gude toun is well quit of that deil of Dundee!"

  As he rode doun the sanctified bends of the Bow,
  Ilk carline was flyting and shaking her pow;
  But the young plants of grace they looked cowthie and slee,
  Thinking, Luck to thy bonnet, thou bonnie Dundee!

  With sour-featured whigs the Grass-market was thranged,
  As if half the west had set tryst to be hanged;
  There was spite in each look, there was fear in each ee,
  As they watched for the bonnets of bonnie Dundee.

  These cowls of Kilmarnock had spits and had spears,
  And lang-hafted gullies to kill cavaliers;
  But they shrunk to close-heads, and the causeway was free
  At the toss of the bonnet of bonnie Dundee.

  He spurred to the foot of the proud castle rock,
  And with the gay Gordon he gallantly spoke:
  "Let Mons Meg and her marrows speak twa words or three,
  For the love of the bonnet of bonnie Dundee."

  The Gordon demands of him which way he goes.
  "Where'er shall direct me the shade of Montrose!
  Your grace in short space shall hear tidings of me,
  Or that low lies the bonnet of bonnie Dundee.

  "There are hills beyond Pentland and lands beyond Forth;
  If there's lords in the Lowlands, there's chiefs in the north;
  There are wild Duniewassals three thousand times three
  Will cry 'Hoigh!' for the bonnet of bonnie Dundee.

  "There's brass on the target of barkened bull-hide,
  There's steel in the scabbard that dangles beside;
  The brass shall be burnished, the steel shall flash free,
  At a toss of the bonnet of bonnie Dundee.

  "Away to the hills, to the caves, to the rocks,
  Ere I own an usurper I'll couch with the fox;
  And tremble, false whigs, in the midst of your glee,
  You have not seen the last of my bonnet and me."

  He waved his proud hand, and the trumpets were blown,
  The kettle-drums clashed, and the horsemen rode on,
  Till on Ravelston's cliffs and on Clermiston's lea
  Died away the wild war-notes of bonnie Dundee.

  Come fill up my cup, come fill up my can;
  Come saddle the horses, and call up the men;
  Come open your doors and let me gae free,
  For it's up with the bonnets of bonnie Dundee


* * * * *



  In a chariot of light from the regions of day,
    The Goddess of Liberty came;
  Ten thousand celestials directed the way,
    And hither conducted the dame.
  A fair budding branch from the gardens above,
    Where millions with millions agree,
  She brought in her hand as a pledge of her love,
    And the plant she named Liberty Tree.

  The celestial exotic struck deep in the ground,
    Like a native it flourished and bore;
  The fame of its fruit drew the nations around,
    To seek out this peaceable shore.
  Unmindful of names or distinction they came,
    For freemen like brothers agree;
  With one spirit endued, they one friendship pursued,
    And their temple was Liberty Tree.

  Beneath this fair tree, like the patriarchs of old,
    Their bread in contentment they ate,
  Unvexed with the troubles of silver and gold,
    The cares of the grand and the great.
  With timber and tar they Old England supplied,
    And supported her power on the sea;
  Her battles they fought, without getting a groat,
    For the honor of Liberty Tree.

  But hear, O ye swains, 'tis a tale most profane,
    How all the tyrannical powers,
  Kings, Commons, and Lords, are united amain.
    To cut down this guardian of ours;
  From the east to the west blow the trumpet to arms,
    Through the land let the sound of it flee,
  Let the far and the near, all unite with a cheer,
    In defence of our Liberty Tree.


* * * * *



  By the rude bridge that arched the flood,
    Their flag to April's breeze unfurled,
  Here once the embattled farmers stood,
    And fired the shot heard round the world.

  The foe long since in silence slept;
    Alike the conqueror silent sleeps;
  And Time the ruined bridge has swept
    Down the dark stream which seaward creeps.

  On this green bank, by this soft stream,
    We set to-day a votive stone;
  That memory may their deed redeem,
    When, like our sires, our sons are gone.

  Spirit, that made those heroes dare
    To die, or leave their children free,
  Bid Time and Nature gently spare
    The shaft we raise to them and thee.


* * * * *


[Footnote A: General Joseph Warren, who fell at the battle of Bunker
Hill, June 17, 1775.]

  Stand! the ground's your own, my braves!
  Will ye give it up to slaves?
  Will ye look for greener graves?
      Hope ye mercy still?
  What's the mercy despots feel?
  Hear it in that battle-peal!
  Read it on yon bristling steel!
      Ask it,—ye who will.

  Fear ye foes who kill for hire?
  Will ye to your homes retire?
  Look behind you!—they're afire!
      And, before you, see
  Who have done it! From the vale
  On they come!—and will ye quail?
  Leaden rain and iron hail
      Let their welcome be!

  In the God of battles trust!
  Die we may,—and die we must:
  But, O, where can dust to dust
      Be consigned so well,
  As where heaven its dews shall shed
  On the martyred patriot's bed,
  And the rocks shall raise their head,
      Of his deeds to tell?


* * * * *



      The trump hath blown,
    And now upon that reeking hill
  Slaughter rides screaming on the vengeful ball;
    While with terrific signal shrill,
  The vultures from their bloody eyries flown,
      Hang o'er them like a pall.
    Now deeper roll the maddening drums,
    And the mingling host like ocean heaves;
      While from the midst a horrid wailing comes,
  And high above the fight the lonely bugle grieves!


* * * * *


[Footnote A: Hanged as a spy by the British, in New York City,
September 22, 1776.]

  To drum-beat and heart-beat
    A soldier marches by:
  There is color in his cheek,
    There is courage in his eye,
  Yet to drum-beat and heart-beat
    In a moment he must die.

  By starlight and moonlight,
    He seeks the Briton's camp;
  He hears the rustling flag,
    And the armèd sentry's tramp;
  And the starlight and moonlight
    His silent wanderings lamp.

  With slow tread and still tread,
    He scans the tented line;
  And he counts the battery guns
    By the gaunt and shadowy pine;
  And his slow tread and still tread
    Gives no warning sign.

  The dark wave, the plumed wave,
    It meets his eager glance;
  And it sparkles 'neath the stars,
    Like the glimmer of a lance—
  A dark wave, a plumed wave,
    On an emerald expanse.

  A sharp clang, a steel clang,
    And terror in the sound!
  For the sentry, falcon-eyed,
    In the camp a spy hath found;
  With a sharp clang, a steel clang,
    The patriot is bound.

  With calm brow, steady brow,
    He listens to his doom;
  In his look there is no fear,
    Nor a shadow-trace of gloom;
  But with calm brow and steady brow
    He robes him for the tomb.

  In the long night, the still night,
    He kneels upon the sod;
  And the brutal guards withhold
    E'en the solemn Word of God!
  In the long night, the still night,
    He walks where Christ hath trod.

  'Neath the blue morn, the sunny morn,
    He dies upon the tree;
  And he mourns that he can lose
    But one life for Liberty;
  And in the blue morn, the sunny morn,
    His spirit-wings are free.

  But his last words, his message-words,
    They burn, lest friendly eye
  Should read how proud and calm
    A patriot could die,
  With his last words, his dying words,
    A soldier's battle-cry.

  From Fame-leaf and Angel-leaf,
    From monument and urn,
  The sad of earth, the glad of heaven,
    His tragic fate shall learn;
  And on Fame-leaf and Angel-leaf
    The name of HALE shall burn!


* * * * *


[Footnote A: General Francis Marion, of South Carolina, renowned as a daring patriot partisan leader during the Revolutionary War.]

  Our band is few, but true and tried,
    Our leader frank and bold;
  The British soldier trembles
    When Marion's name is told.
  Our fortress is the good greenwood,
    Our tent the cypress-tree;
  We know the forest round us,
    As seamen know the sea;
  We know its walls of thorny vines,
    Its glades of reedy grass,
  Its safe and silent islands
    Within the dark morass.

  Woe to the English soldiery
    That little dread us near!
  On them shall light at midnight
    A strange and sudden fear;
  When, waking to their tents on fire,
    They grasp their arms in vain,
  And they who stand to face us
    Are beat to earth again;
  And they who fly in terror deem
    A mighty host behind,
  And hear the tramp of thousands
    Upon the hollow wind.

  Then sweet the hour that brings release
    From danger and from toil;
  We talk the battle over,
    And share the battle's spoil.
  The woodland rings with laugh and shout,
    As if a hunt were up,
  And woodland flowers are gathered
    To crown the soldier's cup.
  With merry songs we mock the wind
    That in the pine-top grieves,
  And slumber long and sweetly
    On beds of oaken leaves.

  Well knows the fair and friendly moon
    The band that Marion leads,—
  The glitter of their rifles,
    The scampering of their steeds.
  'Tis life to guide the fiery barb
    Across the moonlight plain;
  'Tis life to feel the night-wind
    That lifts his tossing mane.
  A moment in the British camp—
    A moment—and away
  Back to the pathless forest,
    Before the peep of day.

  Grave men there are by broad Santee,
    Grave men with hoary hairs;
  Their hearts are all with Marion,
    For Marion are their prayers.
  And lovely ladies greet our band
    With kindliest welcoming,
  With smiles like those of summer,
    And tears like those of spring.
  For them we wear these trusty arms,
    And lay them down no more
  Till we have driven the Briton
    Forever from our shore.


* * * * *


  In their ragged regimentals
  Stood the old Continentals,
      Yielding not.
  When the grenadiers were lunging,
  And like hail fell the plunging
      When the files
      Of the isles,
  From the smoky night encampment, bore the banner of the rampant
  And grummer, grummer, grummer rolled the roll of the drummer,
      Through the morn!

    Then with eyes to the front all,
    And with guns horizontal,
      Stood our sires;
    And the balls whistled deadly,
    And in streams flashing redly
      Blazed the fires;
      As the roar
      On the shore,
  Swept the strong battle-breakers o'er the green-sodded acres
      Of the plain;
  And louder, louder, louder, cracked the black gun-powder,
      Cracking amain!

    Now like smiths at their forges
    Worked the red St. George's
    And the "villanous saltpetre"
    Rung a fierce, discordant metre
      Round their ears;
      As the swift
  With hot sweeping anger, came the horseguards' clangor
      On our flanks;
  Then higher, higher, higher, burned the old fashioned fire
      Through the ranks!

    Then the bare-headed colonel
    Galloped through the white infernal
    And his broad sword was swinging
    And his brazen throat was ringing
      Then the blue
      Bullets flew,
  And the trooper-jackets redden at the touch of the leaden
  And rounder, rounder, rounder, roared the iron six-pounder,
      Hurling death!


* * * * *


[Published soon after the surrender of Cornwallis.]

  Cornwallis led a country dance,
    The like was never seen, sir,
  Much retrogade and much advance,
    And all with General Greene, sir.

  They rambled up and rambled down,
    Joined hands, then off they run, sir.
  Our General Greene to Charlestown,
    The earl to Wilmington, sir.

  Greene in the South then danced a set.
    And got a mighty name, sir,
  Cornwallis jigged with young Fayette,
    But suffered in his fame, sir.

  Then down he figured to the shore,
    Most like a lordly dancer,
  And on his courtly honor swore
    He would no more advance, sir.

  Quoth he, my guards are weary grown
    With footing country dances,
  They never at St. James's shone,
    At capers, kicks, or prances.

  Though men so gallant ne'er were seen,
    While sauntering on parade, sir,
  Or wiggling o'er the park's smooth green,
    Or at a masquerade, sir.

  Yet are red heels and long-laced skirts,
    For stumps and briars meet, sir?
  Or stand they chance with hunting-shirts,
    Or hardy veteran feet, sir?

  Now housed in York, he challenged all,
    At minuet or all 'amande,
  And lessons for a courtly ball
    His guards by day and night conned.

  This challenge known, full soon there came
    A set who had the bon ton,
  De Grasse and Rochambeau, whose fame
    Fut brillant pour un long tems.

  And Washington, Columbia's son,
    Whom every nature taught, sir,
  That grace which can't by pains be won,
    Or Plutus's gold be bought, sir.

  Now hand in hand they circle round
    This ever-dancing peer, sir;
  Their gentle movements soon confound
    The earl as they draw near, sir.

  His music soon forgets to play—
    His feet can move no more, sir,
  And all his bands now curse the day
    They jiggèd to our shore, sir.

  Now Tories all, what can ye say?
    Come—is not this a griper,
  That while your hopes are danced away,
    'Tis you must pay the piper?


* * * * *


[Mexico, September 19, 1846.]

  We were not many,—we who stood
    Before the iron sleet that day;
  Yet many a gallant spirit would
    Give half his years if but he could
  Have been with us at Monterey.

  Now here, now there, the shot it hailed
    In deadly drifts of fiery spray,
  Yet not a single soldier quailed
  When wounded comrades round them wailed
    Their dying shouts at Monterey.

  And on, still on our column kept,
    Through walls of flame its withering way;
  Where fell the dead, the living stept,
  Still charging on the guns which swept
    The slippery streets of Monterey.

  The foe himself recoiled aghast,
    When striking where he strongest lay,
  We swooped his flanking batteries past,
  And, braving full their murderous blast,
    Stormed home the towers of Monterey.

  Our banners on those turrets wave,
    And there our evening bugles play;
  Where orange boughs above their grave,
  Keep green the memory of the brave
    Who fought and fell at Monterey.

  We are not many,—we who pressed
    Beside the brave who fell that day;
  But who of us has not confessed
  He'd rather share their warrior rest
    Than not have been at Monterey?


* * * * *


[April, 1861.]

  World, art thou 'ware of a storm?
    Hark to the ominous sound;
  How the far-off gales their battle form,
    And the great sea-swells feel ground!

  It comes, the Typhoon of Death—
    Nearer and nearer it comes!
  The horizon thunder of cannon-breath
    And the roar of angry drums!

  Hurtle, Terror sublime!
    Swoop o'er the Land to-day—
  So the mist of wrong and crime,
  The breath of our Evil Time
    Be swept, as by fire, away!


* * * * *



    O keeper of the Sacred Key,
    And the Great Seal of Destiny.
    Whose eye is the blue canopy.
  Look down upon the warring world, and tell us what the end will be.

    "Lo, through the wintry atmosphere.
    On the white bosom of the sphere,
    A cluster of five lakes appear;
  And all the land looks like a couch, or warrior's shield, or sheeted

    "And on that vast and hollow field,
    With both lips closed and both eyes sealed,
    A mighty Figure is revealed,—
  Stretched at full length, and stiff and stark, as in the hollow of a

    "The winds have tied the drifted snow
    Around the face and chin; and lo,
    The sceptred Giants come and go,
  And shake their shadowy crowns and say: 'We always feared it would
          be so!'

    "She came of an heroic race:
    A giant's strength, a maiden's grace,
    Like two in one seem to embrace,
  And match, and bend, and thorough-blend, in her colossal form and face.

    "Where can her dazzling falchion be?
    One hand is fallen in the sea;
    The Gulf Stream drifts it far and free;
  And in that hand her shining brand gleams from the depths resplendently.

    "And by the other, in its rest,
    The starry banner of the West
    Is clasped forever to her breast;
  And of her silver helmet, lo, a soaring eagle is the crest.

    "And on her brow, a softened light,
    As of a star concealed from sight
    By some thin veil of fleecy white,
  Or of the rising moon behind the raining vapors of the night.

    "The Sisterhood that was so sweet,
    The Starry System sphered complete,
    Which the mazed Orient used to greet,
  The Four-and-Thirty fallen Stars glimmer and glitter at her feet.

    "And over her,—and over all.
    For panoply and coronal,—
    The mighty Immemorial,
  And everlasting Canopy and Starry Arch and Shield of All.


    "Three cold, bright moons have marched and wheeled;
    And the white cerement that revealed
    A Figure stretched upon a Shield,
  Is turned to verdure; and the Land is now one mighty battle-field.

    "And lo, the children which she bred,
    And more than all else cherished,
    To make them true in heart and head,
  Stand face to face, as mortal foes, with their swords crossed above
          the dead.

    "Each hath a mighty stroke and stride:
    One true,—the more that he is tried;
    The other dark and evil-eyed;—
  And by the hand of one of them, his own dear mother surely died!

    "A stealthy step, a gleam of hell,—
    It is the simple truth to tell,—
    The Son stabbed and the Mother fell:
  And so she lies, all mute and pale, and pure and irreproachable!

    "And then the battle-trumpet blew;
    And the true brother sprang and drew
    His blade to smite the traitor through;
  And so they clashed above the bier, and the Night sweated bloody dew.

    "And all their children, far and wide,
    That are so greatly multiplied,
    Rise up in frenzy and divide;
  And choosing, each whom he will serve, unsheathe the sword and take
          their side.

    "And in the low sun's bloodshot rays,
    Portentous of the coming days,
    The Two great Oceans blush and blaze,
  With the emergent continent between them, wrapt in crimson haze.

    "Now whichsoever stand or fall,
    As God is great, and man is small,
    The Truth shall triumph over all:
  Forever and forevermore, the Truth shall triumph over all!


    "I see the champion sword-strokes flash;
    I see them fall and hear them clash;
    I hear the murderous engines crash;
  I see a brother stoop to loose a foeman-brother's bloody sash.

    "I see the torn and mangled corse,
    The dead and dying heaped in scores,
    The headless rider by his horse,
  The wounded captive bayoneted through and through without remorse.

    "I hear the dying sufferer cry,
    With his crushed face turned to the sky,
    I see him crawl in agony
  To the foul pool, and bow his head into bloody slime, and die.

    "I see the assassin crouch and fire,
    I see his victim fall,—expire;
    I see the murderer creeping nigher
  To strip the dead. He turns the head,—the face! The son beholds his

    "I hear the curses and the thanks;
    I see the mad charge on the flanks,
    The rents, the gaps, the broken ranks,
  The vanquished squadrons driven headlong down the river's bridgeless

    "I see the death-gripe on the plain,
    The grappling monsters on the main,
    The tens of thousands that are slain,
  And all the speechless suffering and agony of heart and brain.

    "I see the dark and bloody spots,
    The crowded rooms and crowded cots,
    The bleaching bones, the battle blots,—
  And writ on many a nameless grave, a legend of forget-me-nots.

    "I see the gorgèd prison-den,
    The dead line and the pent-up pen,
    The thousands quartered in the fen,
  The living-deaths of skin and bone that were the goodly shapes of men.

    "And still the bloody Dew must fall!
    And His great Darkness with the Pall
    Of His dread Judgment cover all,
  Till the Dead Nation rise Transformed by Truth to triumph over all!"

    "And Last—and Last I see—The Dead."
    Thus saith the Keeper of the Key,
    And the Great Seal of Destiny,
    Whose eye is the blue canopy,
  And leaves the Pall of His great Darkness over all the Land and Sea.


* * * * *


[March 25, 1861, South Carolina having adopted the Ordinance of

  She has gone,—she has left us in passion and pride—
  Our stormy-browed sister, so long at our side!
  She has torn her own star from our firmament's glow,
  And turned on her brother the face of a foe!

  O Caroline, Caroline, child of the sun,
  We can never forget that our hearts have been one,—
  Our foreheads both sprinkled in Liberty's name,
  From the fountain of blood with the finger of flame!

  You were always too ready to fire at a touch;
  But we said: "She is hasty—she does not mean much."
  We have scowled when you uttered some turbulent threat;
  But friendship still whispered: "Forgive and forget."

  Has our love all died out? Have its altars grown cold?
  Has the curse come at last which the fathers foretold?
  Then Nature must teach us the strength of the chain
  That her petulant children would sever in vain.

  They may fight till the buzzards are gorged with their spoil,—
  Till the harvest grows black as it rots in the soil,
  Till the wolves and the catamounts troop from their caves,
  And the shark tracks the pirate, the lord of the waves:

  In vain is the strife! When its fury is past,
  Their fortunes must flow in one channel at last,
  As the torrents that rush from the mountains of snow
  Roll mingled in peace in the valleys below.

  Our Union is river, lake, ocean, and sky;
  Man breaks not the medal when God cuts the die!
  Though darkened with sulphur, though cloven with steel,
  The blue arch will brighten, the waters will heal!

  O Caroline, Caroline, child of the sun,
  There are battles with fate that can never be won!
  The star-flowering banner must never be furled,
  For its blossoms of light are the hope of the world!

  Go, then, our rash sister, afar and aloof,—
  Run wild in the sunshine away from our roof;
  But when your heart aches and your feet have grown sore,
  Remember the pathway that leads to our door!


* * * * *


  It don't seem hardly right, John,
    When both my hands was full,
  To stump me to a fight, John,—
    Your cousin, tu, John Bull!
  Old Uncle S., sez he, "I guess
    We know it now," sez he,
  "The Lion's paw is all the law,
    Accordin' to J.B.,
    Thet's fit for you and me!"

  You wonder why we're hot, John?
    Your mark wuz on the guns,
  The neutral guns, thet shot, John,
    Our brothers an' our sons:
  Ole Uncle S., sez he, "I guess
    There's human blood," sez he,
  "By fits an' starts, in Yankee hearts,
    Though 't may surprise J.B.
    More 'n it would you an' me."

  Ef I turned mad dogs loose, John,
    On your front parlor stairs,
  Would it just meet your views, John,
    To wait an' sue their heirs?
  Ole Uncle S., sez he, "I guess,
    I on'y guess," sez he,
  "Thet ef Vattel on his toes fell,
    'T would kind o' rile J.B.,
    Ez wal ez you an' me!"

  Who made the law thet hurts, John,
    Heads I win—ditto tails?
  "J.B." was on his shirts, John,
    Onless my memory fails.
  Ole Uncle S., sez he, "I guess
    (I'm good at thet)," sez he,
  "Thet sauce for goose ain't jest the juice
    For ganders with J.B.,
    No more 'n with you or me!"

  When your rights was our wrongs, John,
    You didn't stop for fuss,—
  Britanny's trident prongs, John,
    Was good 'nough law for us.
  Ole Uncle S., sez he, "I guess
    Though physic's good," sez he,
  "It doesn't foller thet he can swaller
    Prescriptions signed 'J.B.'
    Put up by you an' me."

  We own the ocean, tu, John,
    You mus'n' take it hard,
  Ef we can't think with you, John,
    It's jest your own back yard.
  Ole Uncle S., sez he, "I guess
    Ef thet's his claim," sez he,
  "The fencin' stuff'll cost enough
    To bust up friend J.B.
    Ez wal ez you an' me!"

  Why talk so dreffle big, John,
    Of honor when it meant
  You didn't care a fig, John,
    But jest for ten per cent?
  Ole Uncle S., sez he, "I guess
    He's like the rest," sez he,
  "When all is done, it's number one
    Thet's nearest to J.B.,
    Ez wal ez t' you an' me!"

  We give the critters back, John,
    Cos Abram thought 'twas right;
  It warn't your bullyin' clack, John,
    Provokin' us to fight.
  Ole Uncle S., sez he, "I guess
    We've a hard row," sez he,
  "To hoe just now; but thet, somehow,
    May happen to J.B.,
    Ez well ez you an' me!"

  We ain't so weak an' poor, John,
    With twenty million people,
  An' close to every door, John,
    A school house an' a steeple.
  Ole Uncle S., sez he, "I guess
    It is a fact," sez he,
  "The surest plan to make a Man
    Is, think him so, J.B.,
    Ez much ez you an' me!"

  Our folks believe in Law, John;
    An' it's fer her sake, now,
  They've left the axe an' saw, John,
    The anvil an' the plow.
  Ole Uncle S., sez he, "I guess
    Ef 't warn't fer law," sez he,
  "There'd be one shindy from here to Indy;
    An' thet don't suit J.B.
    (When 'tain't 'twixt you an' me!)"

  We know we've got a cause, John,
    Thet's honest, just, an' true;
  We thought 't would win applause, John,
    Ef nowhere else, from you.
  Ole Uncle S., sez he, "I guess
    His love of right," sez he,
  "Hangs by a rotten fibre o' cotton;
    There's natur' in J.B.,
    Ez well ez you an' me!"

  The South says, "Poor folks down!" John,
    An' "All men up!" say we,—
  White, yaller, black, an' brown, John;
    Now which is your idee?
  Ole Uncle S., sez he, "I guess
    John preaches wal," sez he;
  "But, sermon thru, an' come to du,
    Why there's the old J.B.
    A-crowdin' you an' me!"

  Shall it be love or hate, John?
    It's you thet's to decide;
  Ain't your bonds held by Fate, John,
    Like all the world's beside?
  Ole Uncle S., sez he, "I guess
    Wise men fergive," sez he,
  "But not ferget; an' some time yet
    Thet truth may strike J.B.,
    Ez wal ez you an' me!"

  God means to make this land, John,
    Clear thru, from sea to sea,
  Believe an' understand, John,
    The wuth o' bein' free.
  Ole Uncle S., sez he, "I guess
    God's price is high," sez he;
  "But nothin' else than wut he sells
    Wears long, an' thet J.B.
    May larn, like you an' me!"


* * * * *


  "All quiet along the Potomac," they say,
    "Except now and then a stray picket
  Is shot, as he walks on his beat, to and fro,
    By a rifleman hid in the thicket.
  'Tis nothing: a private or two, now and then,
    Will not count in the news of the battle;
  Not an officer lost,—only one of the men,
    Moaning out, all alone, the death-rattle."

  All quiet along the Potomac to-night,
    Where the soldiers lie peacefully dreaming;
  Their tents in the rays of the clear autumn moon,
    Or the light of the watch-fires, are gleaming.
  A tremulous sigh, as the gentle night-wind
    Through the forest leaves softly is creeping;
  While stars up above, with their glittering eyes,
    Keep guard,—for the army is sleeping.

  There's only the sound of the lone sentry's tread
    As he tramps from the rock to the fountain,
  And he thinks of the two in the low trundle-bed,
    Far away in the cot on the mountain.
  His musket falls slack; his face, dark and grim,
    Grows gentle with memories tender,
  As he mutters a prayer for the children asleep,
    For their mother,—may Heaven defend her!

  The moon seems to shine just as brightly as then,
    That night when the love yet unspoken
  Leaped up to his lips,—when low, murmured vows
    Were pledged to be ever unbroken;
  Then drawing his sleeve roughly over his eyes,
    He dashes off tears that are welling,
  And gathers his gun closer up to its place,
    As if to keep down the heart-swelling.

  He passes the fountain, the blasted pine-tree,—
    The footstep is lagging and weary;
  Yet onward he goes, through the broad belt of light,
    Toward the shades of the forest so dreary.
  Hark! was it the night-wind that rustled the leaves?
    Was it moonlight so wondrously flashing?
  It looked like a rifle: "Ha! Mary, good-bye!"
    And the life-blood is ebbing and plashing.

  All quiet along the Potomac to-night,—
    No sound save the rush of the river;
  While soft falls the dew on the face of the dead,—
  The picket's off duty forever.


* * * * *


  Alas the weary hours pass slow,
    The night is very dark and still,
  And in the marshes far below
    I hear the bearded whippoorwill.
  I scarce can see a yard ahead;
    My ears are strained to catch each sound;
  I hear the leaves about me shed,
    And the spring's bubbling through the ground.

  Along the beaten path I pace,
    Where white rags mark my sentry's track;
  In formless shrubs I seem to trace
    The foeman's form, with bending back;
  I think I see him crouching low—
    I stop and list—I stoop and peer,
  Until the neighboring hillocks grow
    To groups of soldiers far and near.

  With ready piece I wait and watch,
    Until my eyes, familiar grown,
  Detect each harmless earthen notch,
    And turn guerrillas into stone;
  And then amid the lonely gloom,
    Beneath the tall old chestnut trees,
  My silent marches I resume,
    And think of other times than these.

  "Halt! who goes there?" my challenge cry,
    It rings along the watchful line;
  "Relief!" I hear a voice reply—
    "Advance, and give the countersign!"
  With bayonet at the charge I wait—
    The corporal gives the mystic spell;
  With arms aport I charge my mate,
    Then onward pass, and all is well.

  But in the tent that night awake,
    I ask, if in the fray I fall,
  Can I the mystic answer make,
    When the angelic sentries call?
  And pray that Heaven may so ordain,
    Where'er I go, what fate be mine,
  Whether in pleasure or in pain,
    I still may have the countersign.


* * * * *


  "Rifleman shoot me a fancy shot
    Straight at the heart of yon prowling vidette;
  Ring me a ball in the glittering spot
    That shines on his breast like an amulet!"

  "Ah, captain! here goes for a fine-drawn bead,
    There's music around when my barrel's in tune!"
  Crack! went the rifle, the messenger sped,
    And dead from his horse fell the ringing dragoon.

  "Now, rifleman, steal through the bushes, and snatch
    From your victim some trinket to handsel first blood;
  A button, a loop, or that luminous patch
    That gleams in the moon like a diamond stud!"

  "O captain! I staggered, and sunk on my track,
    When I gazed on the face of that fallen vidette,
  For he looked so like you, as he lay on his back,
    That my heart rose upon me, and masters me yet.

  "But I snatched off the trinket,—this locket of gold;
    An inch from the centre my lead broke its way,
  Scarce grazing the picture, so fair to behold,
    Of a beautiful lady in bridal array."

  "Ha! rifleman, fling me the locket!—'tis she,
    My brother's young bride, and the fallen dragoon
  Was her husband—Hush! soldier, 'twas Heaven's decree,
    We must bury him there, by the light of the moon!

  "But hark! the far bugles their warnings unite;
    War is a virtue,—weakness a sin;
  There's a lurking and loping around us to-night,
    Load again, rifleman, keep your hand in!"


* * * * *


  The colonel rode by his picket-line
    In the pleasant morning sun,
  That glanced from him far off to shine
    On the crouching rebel picket's gun.

  From his command the captain strode
    Out with a grave salute,
  And talked with the colonel as he rode:—
    The picket levelled his piece to shoot.

  The colonel rode and the captain walked,—
    The arm of the picket tired;
  Their faces almost touched as they talked,
    And, swerved from his aim, the picket fired.

  The captain fell at the horse's feet,
    Wounded and hurt to death,
  Calling upon a name that was sweet
    As God is good, with his dying breath.

  And the colonel that leaped from his horse and knelt
    To close the eyes so dim,
  A high remorse for God's mercy felt,
    Knowing the shot was meant for him.

  And he whispered, prayer-like, under his breath,
    The name of his own young wife:
  For Love, that had made his friend's peace with Death,
    Alone could make his with life.


* * * * *


[September, 1861;]

  We are coming, Father Abraham, three hundred thousand more!
  From Mississippi's winding stream and from New England's shore;
  We leave our ploughs and workshops, our wives and children dear,
  With hearts too full for utterance, with but a silent tear;
  We dare not look behind us, but steadfastly before:
  We are coming, Father Abraham, three hundred thousand more!

  If you look across the hill-tops that meet the northern sky,
  Long moving lines of rising dust your vision may descry;
  And now the wind, an instant, tears the cloudy veil aside,
  And floats aloft our spangled flag in glory and in pride,
  And bayonets in the sunlight gleam, and bands brave music pour:
  We are coming, Father Abraham, three hundred thousand more!

  If you look all up our valleys where the growing harvests shine,
  You may see our sturdy farmer boys fast forming into line;
  And children from their mother's knees are pulling at the weeds,
  And learning how to reap and sow against their country's needs;
  And a farewell group stands weeping at every cottage door:
  We are coming, Father Abraham, three hundred thousand more!

  You have called us, and we're coming, by Richmond's bloody tide
  To lay us down, for Freedom's sake, our brothers' bones beside,
  Or from foul treason's savage grasp to wrench the murderous blade,
  And in the face of foreign foes its fragments to parade.
  Six hundred thousand loyal men and true have gone before:
  We are coming, Father Abraham, three hundred thousand more!


* * * * *


  Old man never had much to say—
    'Ceptin' to Jim,—
  And Jim was the wildest boy he had,
    And the old man jes' wrapped up in him!
  Never heerd him speak but once
  Er twice in my life,—and first time was
  When the army broke out, and Jim he went,
  The old man backin' him, fer three months;
  And all 'at I heerd the old man say
  Was jes' as we turned to start away,—
    "Well, good-bye, Jim:
    Take keer of yourse'f!"

  'Peared like he was more satisfied
    Jes' lookin' at Jim
  And likin' him all to hisse'f-like, see?—
    'Cause he was jes' wrapped up in him!
  And over and over I mind the day
  The old man come and stood round in the way
  While we was drillin', a-watchin' Jim;
  And down at the deepot a heerin' him say,—
    "Well, good-bye, Jim:
    Take keer of yourse'f!"

  Never was nothin' about the farm
    Disting'ished Jim;
  Neighbors all ust to wonder why
    The old man 'peared wrapped up in him:
  But when Cap. Biggler, he writ back
  'At Jim was the bravest boy we had
  In the whole dern rigiment, white er black,
  And his fightin' good as his farmin' bad,—
  'At he had led, with a bullet clean
  Bored through his thigh, and carried the flag
  Through the bloodiest battle you ever seen,—
  The old man wound up a letter to him
  'At Cap. read to us, 'at said,—"Tell Jim Good-bye;
    And take keer of hisse'f!"

  Jim come home jes' long enough
    To take the whim
  'At he'd like to go back in the calvery—
    And the old man jes' wrapped up in him!
  Jim 'lowed 'at he'd had sich luck afore,
  Guessed he'd tackle her three years more.
  And the old man give him a colt he'd raised,
  And follered him over to Camp Ben Wade,
  And laid around fer a week er so,
  Watchin' Jim on dress-parade;
  'Tel finally he rid away,
  And last he heerd was the old man say,—
    "Well, good-bye, Jim:
    Take keer of yourse'f"

  Tuk the papers, the old man did,
    A-watchin' fer Jim,
  Fully believin' he'd make his mark
    Some way—jes' wrapped up in him!
  And many a time the word 'ud come
  'At stirred him up like the tap of a drum:
  At Petersburg fer instunce, where
  Jim rid right into their cannons there,
  And tuk 'em, and p'inted 'em t' other way,
  And socked it home to the boys in gray,
  As they skooted fer timber, and on and on—
  Jim a lieutenant,—and one arm gone,—
  And the old man's words in his mind all day,—
    "Well, good-bye, Jim:
    Take keer of yourse'f!"

  Think of a private, now, perhaps,
    We'll say like Jim,
  'At's clumb clean up to the shoulder-straps—
    And the old man jes' wrapped up in him!
  Think of him—with the war plum' through,
  And the glorious old Red-White-and-Blue
  A-laughin' the news down over Jim,
  And the old man, bendin' over him—
  The surgeon turnin' away with tears
  'At hadn't leaked fer years and years,
  As the hand of the dyin' boy clung to
  His Father's, the old voice in his ears,—
    "Well, good-bye, Jim:
    Take keer of yourse'f!"


* * * * *


  Come, stack arms, men; pile on the rails;
    Stir up the camp-fire bright!
  No growling if the canteen fails:
    We'll make a roaring night.
  Here Shenandoah brawls along,
  There burly Blue Ridge echoes strong,
  To swell the Brigade's rousing song,
    Of Stonewall Jackson's Way.

  We see him now—the queer slouched hat,
    Cocked o'er his eye askew;
  The shrewd, dry smile; the speech so pat,
    So calm, so blunt, so true.
  The "Blue-light Elder" knows 'em well:
  Says he, "That's Banks; he's fond of shell.—
  Lord save his soul! we'll give him—;" Well,
    That's Stonewall Jackson's Way.

  Silence! Ground arms! Kneel all! Caps off!
    Old Massa's going to pray.
  Strangle the fool that dares to scoff:
    Attention!—it's his way.
  Appealing from his native sod,
  In forma pauperis to God.
  "Lay bare Thine arm! Stretch forth Thy rod:
    Amen!"—That's Stonewall's Way.

  He's in the saddle now. Fall in!
    Steady! the whole brigade.
  Hill's at the ford, cut off; we'll win
    His way out, ball and blade.
  What matter if our shoes are worn?
  What matter if our feet are torn?
  Quick step! we're with him before morn:
    That's Stonewall Jackson's Way.

  The sun's bright lances rout the mists
    Of morning; and—By George!
  Here's Longstreet, struggling in the lists,
    Hemmed in an ugly gorge.
  Pope and his Dutchmen!—whipped before.
  "Bay'nets and grape!" hear Stonewall roar.
  Charge, Stuart! Pay off Ashby's score,
    In Stonewall Jackson's Way.

  Ah, Maiden! wait and watch and yearn
    For news of Stonewall's band.
  Ah, Widow! read, with eyes that burn,
    That ring upon thy hand.
  Ah, Wife! sew on, pray on, hope on!
  Thy life shall not be all forlorn.
  The foe had better ne'er been born,
    That gets in Stonewall's Way.


* * * * *


  Up from the meadows rich with corn,
  Clear in the cool September morn.

  The clustered spires of Frederick stand
  Green-walled by the hills of Maryland.

  Round about them orchards sweep.
  Apple and peach trees fruited deep,

  Fair as a garden of the Lord
  To the eyes of the famished rebel horde,

  On that pleasant morn of the early fall
  When Lee marched over the mountain wall,—

  Over the mountains, winding down,
  Horse and foot into Frederick town.

  Forty flags with their silver stars,
  Forty flags with their crimson bars,

  Flapped in the morning wind: the sun
  Of noon looked down, and saw not one.

  Tip rose old Barbara Frietchie then,
  Bowed with her fourscore years and ten;

  Bravest of all in Frederick town,
  She took up the flag the men hauled down;

  In her attic-window the staff she set,
  To show that one heart was loyal yet.

  Up the street came the rebel tread,
  Stonewall Jackson riding ahead.

  Under his slouched hat left and right
  He glanced: the old flag met his sight.

  "Halt!"—the dust-brown ranks stood fast;
  "Fire!"—out blazed the rifle-blast.

  It shivered the window, pane and sash;
  It rent the banner with seam and gash.

  Quick, as it fell, from the broken staff
  Dame Barbara snatched the silken scarf;

  She leaned far out on the window-sill,
  And shook it forth with a royal will.

  "Shoot, if you must, this old gray head,
  But spare your country's flag," she said.

  A shade of sadness, a blush of shame,
  Over the face of the leader came;

  The nobler nature within him stirred
  To life at that woman's deed and word:

  "Who touches a hair of yon gray head
  Dies like a dog! March on!" he said.

  All day long through Frederick street
  Sounded the tread of marching feet;

  All day long that free flag tost
  Over the heads of the rebel host.

  Ever its torn folds rose and fell
  On the loyal winds that loved it well;

  And through the hill-gaps sunset light
  Shone over it with a warm good-night.

  Barbara Frietchie's work is o'er.
  And the rebel rides on his raids no more.

  Honor to her! and let a tear
  Fall, for her sake, on Stonewall's bier.

  Over Barbara Frietchie's grave,
  Flag of freedom and union, wave!

  Peace and order and beauty draw
  Round thy symbol of light and law;

  And ever the stars above look down
  On thy stars below in Frederick town!


* * * * *


  Our good steeds snuff the evening air,
    Our pulses with their purpose tingle;
  The foeman's fires are twinkling there;
    He leaps to hear our sabres jingle!
  Each carbine send its whizzing ball:
  Now, cling! clang! forward all,
        Into the fight!

  Dash on beneath the smoking dome:
  Through level lightnings gallop nearer!
  One look to Heaven! No thoughts of home:
  The guidons that we bear are dearer.
  Cling! clang! forward all!
  Heaven help those whose horses fall:
     Cut left and right!

  They flee before our fierce attack!
    They fall! they spread in broken surges.
  Now, comrades, bear our wounded back,
    And leave the foeman to his dirges.
  The bugles sound the swift recall:
  Cling! clang! backward all!
      Home, and good night!


* * * * *


  Our bugles sound gayly. To horse and away!
  And over the mountains breaks the day;
  Then ho! brothers, ho! for the ride or the fight,
  There are deeds to be done ere we slumber to-night!
    And whether we fight or whether we fall
       By sabre-stroke or rifle-ball,
       The hearts of the free will remember us yet,
       And our country, our country will never forget!

  Then mount and away! let the coward delight
  To be lazy all day and safe all night;
  Our joy is a charger, flecked with foam,
  And the earth is our bed and the saddle our home!
    And whether we fight, etc.

  See yonder the ranks of the traitorous foe,
  And bright in the sunshine bayonets glow!
  Breathe a prayer, but no sigh; think for what you would fight;
  Then charge! with a will, boys, and God for the right!
    And whether we fight, etc.

  We have gathered again the red laurels of war;
  We have followed the traitors fast and far;
  But some who rose gayly this morn with the sun
  Lie bleeding and pale on the field they have won!
  But whether we fight or whether we fall
  By sabre-stroke or rifle-ball,
  The hearts of the free will remember us yet,
  And our country, our country will never forget


* * * * *


[Footnote A: Major-General Philip Kearny, killed at the battle of
Chantilly, September 1, 1862.]

  So that soldierly legend is still on its journey,—
    That story of Kearny who knew not to yield!
  'Twas the day when with Jameson, fierce Berry, and Birney,
    Against twenty thousand he rallied the field.
  Where the red volleys poured, where the clamor rose highest,
    Where the dead lay in clumps through the dwarf oak and pine,
  Where the aim from the thicket was surest and nighest,—
    No charge like Phil Kearny's along the whole line.

  When the battle went ill, and the bravest were solemn,
    Near the dark Seven Pines, where we still held our ground,
  He rode down the length of the withering column,
    And his heart at our war-cry leapt up with a bound;
  He snuffed, like his charger, the wind of the powder,—
    His sword waved us on and we answered the sign:
  Loud our cheer as we rushed, but his laugh rang the louder,
    "There's the devil's own fun, boys, along the whole line!"

  How he strode his brown steed! How we saw his blade brighten
    In the one hand still left,—and the reins in his teeth!
  He laughed like a boy when the holidays heighten.
    But a soldier's glance shot from his visor beneath.
  Up came the reserves to the mellay infernal,
    Asking where to go in,—through the clearing or pine?
  "O, anywhere! Forward! 'Tis all the same, Colonel:
    You'll find lovely fighting along the whole line!"

  O, evil the black shroud of night at Chantilly,
    That hid him from sight of his brave men and tried!
  Foul, foul sped the bullet that clipped the white lily,
    The flower of our knighthood, the whole army's pride!
  Yet we dream that he still,—in that shadowy region
    Where the dead form their ranks at the wan drummer's sign,—
  Rides on, as of old, down the length of his legion,
    And the word still is Forward! along the whole line.


* * * * *


  The general dashed along the road
    Amid the pelting rain;
  How joyously his bold face glowed
    To hear our cheers' refrain!

  His blue blouse flapped in wind and wet,
    His boots were splashed with mire,
  But round his lips a smile was set,
    And in his eyes a fire.

  A laughing word, a gesture kind,—
    We did not ask for more,
  With thirty weary miles behind,
    A weary fight before.

  The gun grew light to every man,
    The crossed belts ceased their stress,
  As onward to the column's van
    We watched our leader press.

  Within an hour we saw him lie,
    A bullet in his brain,
  His manly face turned to the sky,
    And beaten by the rain.


* * * * *


[Footnote A: Major-General Philip Kearny.]

  Close his eyes; his work is done!
    What to him is friend or foeman,
  Rise of moon or set of sun,
    Hand of man or kiss of woman?
      Lay him low, lay him low,
      In the clover or the snow!
      What cares he? he cannot know;
        Lay him low!

  As man may, he fought his fight,
    Proved his truth by his endeavor;
  Let him sleep in solemn night,
    Sleep forever and forever.
      Lay him low, lay him low,
      In the clover or the snow!
      What cares he? he cannot know;
        Lay him low!

  Fold him in his country's stars,
    Roll the drum and fire the volley!
  What to him are all our wars?—
    What but death-bemocking folly?
      Lay him low, lay him low,
      In the clover or the snow!
      What cares he? he cannot know;
        Lay him low!

  Leave him to God's watching eye;
    Trust him to the hand that made him.
  Mortal love weeps idly by;
    God alone has power to aid him.
      Lay him low, lay him low,
      In the clover or the snow!
      What cares he? he cannot know;
        Lay him low!


* * * * *


[December 15, 1862.]

  'Twas the last fight at Fredericksburg,—
    Perhaps the day you reck,
  Our boys, the Twenty-Second Maine,
    Kept Early's men in check.
  Just where Wade Hampton boomed away
    The fight went neck and neck.

  All day the weaker wing we held,
    And held it with a will.
  Five several stubborn times we charged
    The battery on the hill,
  And five times beaten back, re-formed,
    And kept our column still.

  At last from out the centre fight
    Spurred up a general's aide:
  "That battery must silenced be!"
    He cried, as past he sped.
  Our colonel simply touched his cap,
    And then, with measured tread,

  To lead the crouching line once more
    The grand old fellow came.
  No wounded man but raised his head
    And strove to gasp his name,
  And those who could not speak nor stir,
    "God blessed him" just the same.

  For he was all the world to us,
    That hero gray and grim.
  Right well we knew that fearful slope
    We'd climb with none but him,
  Though while his white head led the way
    We'd charge hell's portals in.

  This time we were not half-way up.
    When, midst the storm of shell,
  Our leader, with his sword upraised,
    Beneath our bayonets fell.
  And, as we bore him back, the foe
    Set up a joyous yell.

  Our hearts went with him. Back we swept,
    And when the bugle said
  "Up, charge again!" no man was there
    But hung his dogged head.
  "We've no one left to lead us now,"
    The sullen soldiers said.

  Just then before the laggard line
    The colonel's horse we spied,
  Bay Billy with his trappings on,
    His nostrils swelling wide,
  As though still on his gallant back
    The master sat astride.

  Right royally he took the place
    That was of old his wont,
  And with a neigh that seemed to say,
    Above the battle's brunt,
  "How can the Twenty-Second charge
    If I am not in front?"

  Like statues rooted there we stood,
    And gazed a little space,
  Above that floating mane we missed
    The dear familiar face,
  But we saw Bay Billy's eye of fire,
    And it gave us heart of grace.

  No bugle-call could rouse us all
    As that brave sight had done,
  Down all the battered line we felt
    A lightning impulse run.
  Up! up the hill we followed Bill,—
    And we captured every gun!

  And when upon the conquered height
    Died out the battle's hum,
  Vainly mid living and the dead
    We sought our leader dumb.
  It seemed as if a spectre steed
    To win that day had come.

  And then the dusk and dew of night
    Fell softly o'er the plain,
  As though o'er man's dread work of death
    The angels wept again,
  And drew night's curtain gently round
    A thousand beds of pain.

  All night the surgeons' torches went,
    The ghastly rows between,—
  All night with solemn step I paced
    The torn and bloody green.
  But who that fought in the big war
    Such dread sights have not seen?

  At last the morning broke. The lark
    Sang in the merry skies,
  As if to e'en the sleepers there
    It bade awake, and rise!
  Though naught but that last trump of all
    Could ope their heavy eyes.

  And then once more with banners gay,
    Stretched out the long brigade.
  Trimly upon the furrowed field
    The troops stood on parade,
  And bravely mid the ranks were closed
    The gaps the fight had made.

  Not half the Twenty-Second's men
    Were in their place that morn;
  And Corporal Dick, who yester-noon
    Stood six brave fellows on,
  Now touched my elbow in the ranks,
    For all between were gone.

  Ah I who forgets that dreary hour
    When, as with misty eyes,
  To call the old familiar roll
    The solemn sergeant tries,—
  One feels that thumping of the heart
    As no prompt voice replies.

  And as in faltering tone and slow
    The last few names were said,
  Across the field some missing horse
    Toiled up the weary tread.
  It caught the sergeant's eye, and quick
    Bay Billy's name he read.

  Yes! there the old bay hero stood,
    All safe from battle's harms,
  And ere an order could be heard,
    Or the bugle's quick alarms,
  Down all the front, from end to end,
    The troops presented arms!

  Not all the shoulder-straps on earth
    Could still our mighty cheer;
  And ever from that famous day,
    When rang the roll call clear,
  Bay Billy's name was read, and then
    The whole line answered, "Here!"


* * * * *


      Steady, boys, steady!
      Keep your arms ready,
  God only knows whom we may meet here.
      Don't let me be taken;
      I'd rather awaken,
  To-morrow, in—no matter where,
  Than lie in that foul prison-hole—over there.
        Step slowly!
        Speak lowly!
    These rocks may have life.
      Lay me down in this hollow;
    We are out of the strife.
  By heavens! the foemen may track me in blood,
  For this hole in my breast is outpouring a flood.
  No! no surgeon for me; he can give me no aid;
  The surgeon I want is pickaxe and spade.
  What, Morris, a tear? Why, shame on ye, man!
  I thought you a hero; but since you began
  To whimper and cry like a girl in her teens,
  By George! I don't know what the devil it means!
  Well! well! I am, rough; 'tis a very rough school,
  This life of a trooper,—but yet I'm no fool!
  I know a brave man, and a friend from a foe;
  And, boys, that you love me I certainly know;
    But wasn't it grand
  When they came down the hill over sloughing and sand!
  But we stood—did we not?—like immovable rock,
  Unheeding their balls and repelling their shock.
    Did you mind the loud cry
    When, as turning to fly,
  Our men sprang upon them, determined to die?
      O, wasn't it grand!

  God help the poor wretches that fell in that fight;
  No time was there given for prayer or for flight;
  They fell by the score, in the crash, hand to hand,
  And they mingled their blood with the sloughing and sand.
  Great Heavens! this bullet-hole gapes like a grave;
  A curse on the aim of the traitorous knave!
  Is there never a one of ye knows how to pray,
  Or speak for a man as his life ebbs away?
  Our Father! our Father!… why don't ye proceed?
  Can't you see I am dying? Great God, how I bleed!
  Ebbing away!
    Ebbing away!
      The light of day
      Is turning to gray.
  Our Father in Heaven,—boys, tell me the rest,
  While I stanch the hot blood from this hole in my breast.
  There's something about the forgiveness of sin—
  Put that in! put that in!—and then
  I'll follow your words and say an amen.

  Here, Morris, old fellow, get hold of my hand;
  And, Wilson, my comrade—O, wasn't it grand
  When they came down the hill like a thunder-charged cloud!
  Where's Wilson, my comrade?—Here, stoop down your head;
  Can't you say a short prayer for the dying and dead!
    "Christ God, who died for sinners all,
      Hear thou this suppliant wanderer's cry;
    Let not e'en this poor sparrow fall
      Unheeded by thy gracious eye.

    "Throw wide thy gates to let him in,
      And take him, pleading, to thine arms;
    Forgive, O Lord! his life-long sin.
      And quiet all his fierce alarms."

  God bless you, my comrade, for saying that hymn;
  It is light to my path when my eye has grown dim.
  I am dying—bend down till I touch you once more—
  Don't forget me, old fellow,—God prosper this war!
  Confusion to traitors!—keep hold of my hand—
  And float the OLD FLAG o'er a prosperous land!


* * * * *


  Into a ward of the whitewashed halls
    Where the dead and the dying lay,
  Wounded by bayonets, shells, and balls,
    Somebody's darling was borne one day—
  Somebody's darling, so young and brave;
    Wearing yet on his sweet pale face—
  Soon to be hid in the dust of the grave—
    The lingering light of his boyhood's grace.

  Matted and damp are the curls of gold
    Kissing the snow of that fair young brow;
  Pale are the lips of delicate mould—
    Somebody's darling is dying now.
  Back from his beautiful blue-veined brow
    Brush his wandering waves of gold;
  Cross his hands on his bosom now—
    Somebody's darling is still and cold.

  Kiss him once for somebody's sake,
    Murmur a prayer soft and low;
  One bright curl from its fair mates take—
    They were somebody's pride, you know.
  Somebody's hand hath rested here—
    Was it a mother's, soft and white?
  Or have the lips of a sister fair
    Been baptized in their waves of light?

  God knows best. He has somebody's love,
    Somebody's heart enshrined him there,
  Somebody wafts his name above,
    Night and morn, on the wings of prayer.
  Somebody wept when he marched away,
    Looking so handsome, brave, and grand;
  Somebody's kiss on his forehead lay,
    Somebody clung to his parting hand.

  Somebody's watching and waiting for him,
    Yearning to hold him again to her heart;
  And there he lies with his blue eyes dim,
    And the smiling, childlike lips apart.
  Tenderly bury the fair young dead—
    Pausing to drop on his grave a tear.
  Carve on the wooden slab o'er his head:
    "Somebody's darling slumbers here."


* * * * *


  In the prison cell I sit,
    Thinking, mother dear, of you,
  And our bright and happy home so far away,
    And the tears they fill my eyes,
  Spite of all that I can do,
    Tho' I try to cheer my comrades and be gay.

  Trump, tramp, tramp, the 'boys are marching,
    Oh, cheer up, comrades, they will come,
  And beneath the starry flag we shall breathe the air again,
    Of freedom in our own beloved home.

  In the battle front we stood
    When the fiercest charge they made,
  And they swept us off a hundred men or more,
    But before we reached their lines
  They were beaten back dismayed,
    And we heard the cry of vict'ry o'er and o'er,—


  So within the prison cell
    We are waiting for the day
  That shall come to open wide the iron door,
    And the hollow eye grows bright,
  And the poor heart almost gay,
    As we think of seeing friends and home once more.

  Tramp, tramp, tramp, the boys are marching,
    Oh, cheer up, comrades, they 'will come,

  And beneath the starry flag we shall breathe the air again,
  Of freedom in our own beloved home.


* * * * *


  Weave no more silks, ye Lyons looms,
    To deck our girls for gay delights!
  The crimson flower of battle blooms,
    And solemn marches fill the night.

  Weave but the flag whose bars to-day
    Drooped heavy o'er our early dead,
  And homely garments, coarse and gray,
    For orphans that must earn their bread!

  Keep back your tunes, ye viols sweet,
    That poured delight from other lands!
  Rouse there the dancer's restless feet:
    The trumpet leads our warrior bands.

  And ye that wage the war of words
    With mystic fame and subtle power,
  Go, chatter to the idle birds,
    Or teach the lesson of the hour!

  Ye Sibyl Arts, in one stern knot
    Be all your offices combined!
  Stand close, while Courage draws the lot,
    The destiny of human kind.

  And if that destiny could fail,
    The sun should darken in the sky,
  The eternal bloom of Nature pale,
    And God, and Truth, and Freedom die!


* * * * *


  Dearest love, do you remember
    When we last did meet,
  How you told me that you loved me
    Kneeling at my feet?
  Oh, how proud you stood before me
    In your suit of blue,
  When you vowed to me and country
    Ever to be true.

  Chorus.—Weeping, sad and lonely,
              Hopes and fears, how vain;
              Yet praying
              When this cruel war is over.
              Praying that we meet again.

  When the summer breeze is sighing
    Mournfully along,
  Or when autumn leaves are falling,
    Sadly breathes the song.
  Oft in dreams I see thee lying
    On the battle plain,
  Lonely, wounded, even dying,
    Calling, but in vain.
  Chorus.—Weeping, sad, etc.

  If, amid the din of battle,
    Nobly you should fall,
  Far away from those who love you,
    None to hear you call,
  Who would whisper words of comfort?
    Who would soothe your pain?
  Ah, the many cruel fancies
    Ever in my brain!
  Chorus.—Weeping, sad, etc.

  But our country called you, darling,
    Angels cheer your way!
  While our nation's sons are fighting,
    We can only pray.
  Nobly strike for God and country,
    Let all nations see
  How we love the starry banner,
    Emblem of the free.

  Chorus.—Weeping, sad and lonely,
              Hopes and fears, how vain;
              Yet praying
              When this cruel war is over,
              Praying that we meet again.


* * * * *


[September 19, 1864.]

  Up from the South at break of day,
  Bringing to Winchester fresh dismay,
  The affrighted air with a shudder bore,
  Like a herald in haste, to the chieftain's door,
  The terrible grumble and rumble and roar,
  Telling the battle was on once more,
  And Sheridan twenty miles away.

  And wider still those billows of war
  Thundered along the horizon's bar;
  And louder yet into Winchester rolled
  The roar of that red sea uncontrolled,
  Making the blood of the listener cold
  As he thought of the stake in that fiery fray,
  With Sheridan twenty miles away.

  But there is a road from Winchester town,
  A good, broad highway, leading down;
  And there, through the flash of the morning light,
  A steed as black as the steeds of night
  Was seen to pass as with eagle flight.
  As if he knew the terrible need,
  He stretched away with the utmost speed;
  Hills rose and fell,—but his heart was gay,
  With Sheridan fifteen miles away.

  Still sprung from those swift hoofs, thundering South,
  The dust, like smoke from the cannon's mouth;
  Or the trail of a comet, sweeping faster and faster,
  Foreboding to traitors the doom of disaster.
  The heart of the steed and the heart of the master
  Were beating, like prisoners assaulting their walls.
  Impatient to be where the battle-field calls;
  Every nerve of the charger was strained to full play,
  With Sheridan only ten miles away.

  Under his spurning feet, the road
  Like an arrowy Alpine river flowed,
  And the landscape sped away behind,
  Like an ocean flying before the wind;
  And the steed, like a bark fed with furnace ire,
  Swept on, with his wild eyes full of fire;
  But, lo! he is nearing his heart's desire,
  He is snuffing the smoke of the roaring fray,
  With Sheridan only five miles away.

  The first that the General saw were the groups
  Of stragglers, and then the retreating troops;
  What was done,—what to do,—a glance told him both,
  And, striking his spurs with a terrible oath,
  He dashed down the line mid a storm of huzzas,
  And the wave of retreat checked its course there, because
  The sight of the master compelled it to pause.
  With foam and with dust the black charger was gray;
  By the flash of his eye, and his nostril's play,
  He seemed to the whole great army to say,
  "I have brought you Sheridan all the way
  From Winchester down, to save the day!"

  Hurrah, hurrah for Sheridan!
  Hurrah, hurrah, for horse and man!
  And when their statues are placed on high,
  Under the dome of the Union sky,—
  The American soldier's Temple of Fame,—
  There with the glorious General's name
  Be it said in letters both bold and bright:
  "Here is the steed that saved the day
  By carrying Sheridan into the fight,
  From Winchester,—twenty miles away!"


* * * * *


  What, was it a dream? am I all alone
    In the dreary night and the drizzling rain?
  Hist!—ah, it was only the river's moan;
    They have left me behind with the mangled slain.

  Yes, now I remember it all too well!
    We met, from the battling ranks apart;
  Together our weapons Hashed and fell,
    And mine was sheathed in his quivering heart.

  In the cypress gloom, where the deed was done,
    It was all too dark to see his face;
  But I heard his death-groans, one by one,
    And he holds me still in a cold embrace.

  He spoke but once, and I could not hear
    The words he said for the cannon's roar;
  But my heart grew cold with a deadly fear,—
    God! I had heard that voice before!

  Had heard it before at our mother's knee,
    When we lisped the words of our evening prayer!
  My brother! would I had died for thee,—
    This burden is more than my soul can bear!

  I pressed my lips to his death-cold cheek,
    And begged him to show me, by word or sign,
  That he knew and forgave me: he could not speak,
    But he nestled his poor cold face to mine.

  The blood flowed fast from my wounded side,
    And then for a while I forgot my pain,
  And over the lakelet we seemed to glide
    In our little boat, two boys again.

  And then, in my dream, we stood alone
    On a forest path where the shadows fell;
  And I heard again the tremulous tone,
    And the tender words of his last farewell.

  But that parting was years, long years ago,
    He wandered away to a foreign land;
  And our dear old mother will never know
    That he died to-night by his brother's hand.

  The soldiers who buried the dead away
    Disturbed not the clasp of that last embrace,
  But laid them to sleep till the judgment-day,
    Heart folded to heart, and face to face.


* * * * *



  Breathe, trumpets, breathe
    Slow notes of saddest wailing,—
  Sadly responsive peal, ye muffled drums;
  Comrades, with downcast eyes
      And banners trailing,
      Attend him home,—
  The youthful warrior comes.

  Upon his shield,
    Upon his shield returning,
  Borne from the field of honor
    Where he fell;
  Glory and grief, together clasped
    In mourning,
  His fame, his fate
    With sobs exulting tell.

  Wrap round his breast
    The flag his breast defended,—
  His country's flag,
    In battle's front unrolled:
  For it he died;
    On earth forever ended
  His brave young life
    Lives in each sacred fold.
  With proud fond tears,
    By tinge of shame untainted,
  Bear him, and lay him
    Gently in his grave:

  Above the hero write,—
    The young, half-sainted,—
  His country asked his life,
    His life he gave!


* * * * *


  Two armies covered hill and plain,
    Where Rappahannock's waters
  Ran deeply crimsoned with the stain
    Of battle's recent slaughters.

  The summer clouds lay pitched like tents
    In meads of heavenly azure;
  And each dread gun of the elements
    Slept in its embrasure.

  The breeze so softly blew, it made
    No forest leaf to quiver,
  And the smoke of the random cannonade
    Rolled slowly from the river.

  And now, where circling hills looked down
    With cannon grimly planted,
  O'er listless camp and silent town
    The golden sunset slanted.

  When on the fervid air there came
    A strain—now rich, now tender;
  The music seemed itself aflame
    With day's departing splendor.

  A Federal band, which, eve and morn,
    Played measures brave and nimble,
  Had just struck up, with flute and horn
    And lively clash of cymbal.

  Down flocked the soldiers to the banks,
    Till, margined by its pebbles,
  One wooded shore was blue with "Yanks,"
    And one was gray with "Rebels."

  Then all was still, and then the band,
    With movements light and tricksy,
  Made stream and forest, hill and strand,
    Reverberate with "Dixie."

  The conscious stream with burnished glow
    Went proudly o'er its pebbles,
  But thrilled throughout its deepest flow
    With yelling of the Rebels.

  Again a pause, and then again
    The trumpets pealed sonorous,
  And "Yankee Doodle" was the strain
    To which the shore gave chorus.

  The laughing ripple shoreward flew,
    To kiss the shining pebbles;
  Loud shrieked the swarming Boys in Blue
    Defiance to the Rebels.

  And yet once more the bugle sang
    Above the stormy riot;
  No shout upon the evening rang—
    There reigned a holy quiet.

  The sad, slow stream its noiseless flood
    Poured o'er the glistening pebbles;
  All silent now the Yankees stood,
    And silent stood the Rebels.

  No unresponsive soul had heard
    That plaintive note's appealing,
  So deeply "Home, Sweet Home" had stirred
    The hidden fount of feeling.

  Or Blue, or Gray, the soldier sees,
    As by the wand of fairy,
  The cottage 'neath the live-oak trees,
    The cabin by the prairie.

  Or cold, or warm, his native skies,
    Bend in their beauty o'er him;
  Seen through the tear-mist in his eyes,
    His loved ones stand before him.

  As fades the iris after rain
    In April's tearful weather,
  The vision vanished, as the strain
    And daylight died together.

  But memory, waked by music's art,
    Expressed in simplest numbers,
  Subdued the sternest Yankee's heart,
    Made light the Rebel's slumbers.

  And fair the form of Music shines,
    That bright celestial creature.
  Who still, 'mid war's embattled lines,
    Gave this one touch of Nature.


* * * * *


[The last words of Stonewall Jackson[A] were: "Let us cross the river and rest under the shade of the trees."]

[Footnote A: Major-General Thomas J. Jackson, C.S.A., killed on a reconnoissance, May 10, 1863.]

  What are the thoughts that are stirring his breast?
    What is the mystical vision he sees?
  —"Let us pass over the river, and rest
    Under the shade of the trees."

  Has he grown sick of his toils and his tasks?
    Sighs the worn spirit for respite or ease?
  Is it a moment's cool halt that he asks
    Under the shade of the trees?

  Is it the gurgle of water whose flow
    Ofttimes has come to him, borne on the breeze,
  Memory listens to, lapsing so low,
    Under the shade of the trees?

  Nay—though the rasp of the flesh was so sore,
    Faith, that had yearnings far keener than these,
  Saw the soft sheen of the Thitherward Shore
    Under the shade of the trees;—

  Caught the high psalm of ecstatic delight—
    Heard the harps harping, like soundings of seas—
  Watched earth's assoiled ones walking in white
    Under the shade of the trees.

  Oh, was it strange he should pine for release,
    Touched to the soul with such transports as these,—
  He who so needed the balsam of peace,
    Under the shade of the trees?

  Yea, it was noblest for him—it was best
    (Questioning naught of our Father's decrees),
  There to pass over the river and rest
    Under the shade of the trees!


* * * * *


[May 27, 1863.]

  Dark as the clouds of even,
  Banked in the western heaven,
  Waiting the breath that lifts
  All the dead mass, and drifts
  Tempest and falling brand
  Over a ruined land,—
  So still and orderly,
  Arm to arm, knee to knee,
  Waiting the great event,
  Stands the black regiment.

  Down the long dusty line
  Teeth gleam and eyeballs shine;
  And the bright bayonet,
  Bristling and firmly set,
  Flashed with a purpose grand,
  Long ere the sharp command
  Of the fierce rolling drum
  Told them their time had come,
  Told them what work was sent
  For the black regiment.

  "Now," the flag-sergeant cried,
  "Though death and hell betide,
  Let the whole nation see
  If we are fit to be
  Free in this land; or bound
  Down, like the whining hound,—
  Bound with red stripes of pain
  In our cold chains again!"
  O, what a shout there went
  From the black regiment!

  "Charge!" Trump and drum awoke;
  Onward the bondmen broke;
  Bayonet and sabre-stroke
  Vainly opposed their rush.
  Through the wild battle's crush,
  With but one thought aflush,
  Driving their lords like chaff,
  In the guns' mouths they laugh;
  Or at the slippery brands
  Leaping with open hands,
  Down they tear man and horse,
  Down in their awful course;
  Trampling with bloody heel
  Over the crashing steel,—
  All their eyes forward bent,
  Rushed the black regiment.

  "Freedom!" their battle-cry,—
  "Freedom! or leave to die!"
  Ah! and they meant the word,
  Not as with us 'tis heard,
  Not a mere party shout;
  They gave their spirits out,
  Trusted the end to God,
  And on the gory sod
  Rolled in triumphant blood.
  Glad to strike one free blow,
  Whether for weal or woe;
  Glad to breathe one free breath,
  Though on the lips of death;
  Praying,—alas! in vain!—That
  they might fall again,
  So they could once more see
  That burst to liberty!
  This was what "freedom" lent
  To the black regiment.

  Hundreds on hundreds fell;
  But they are resting well;
  Scourges and shackles strong
  Never shall do them wrong.
  O, to the living few,
  Soldiers, be just and true!
  Hail them as comrades tried;
  Fight with them side by side;
  Never, in field or tent,
  Scorn the black regiment!


* * * * *



  "Well, this is bad!" we sighing said,
    While musing round the bivouac fire,
    And dwelling with a fond desire,
  On home and comforts long since fled.

  "How gayly came we forth at first!
    Our spirits high, with new emprise,
    Ambitious of each exercise,
  And glowing with a martial thirst.

  "Equipped as for a holiday,
    With bounteous store of everything
    To use or comfort minist'ring,
  All cheerily we marched away.

  "But as the struggle fiercer grew,
    Light marching orders came apace,—
    And baggage-wagon soon gave place
  To that which sterner uses knew.

  "Our tents—they went a year ago;
    Now kettle, spider, frying-pan
    Are lost to us, and as we can
  We live, while marching to and fro.

  "Our food has lessened, till at length,
    E'en want's gaunt image seems to threat—
    A foe to whom the bravest yet
  Must yield at last his knightly strength.

  "But while we've meat and flour enough
    The bayonet shall be our spit—
    The ramrod bake our dough on it—
  A gum-cloth be our kneading trough.

  "We'll bear privation, danger dare,
    While even these are left to us—
    Be hopeful, faithful, emulous
  Of gallant deeds, though hard our fare!"


  "Three years and more," we grimly said,
    When order came to "Rest at will"
    Beside the corn-field on the hill,
  As on a weary march we sped—

  "Three years and more we've met the foe
    On many a gory, hard-fought field,
    And still we swear we cannot yield
  Till Fate shall bring some deeper woe.

  "Three years and more we've struggled on,
    Through torrid heat and winter's chill,
    Nor bated aught of steadfast will,
  Though even hope seems almost gone.

  "Ill fed, ill clad, and shelterless,
    How little cheer in health we know!
    When wounds and illness lay us low,
  How comfortless our sore distress!

  "These flimsy rags, that scarcely hide
    Our forms, can naught discourage us;
    But Hunger—ah! it may be thus
  That Fortune shall the strife decide.

  "But while the corn-fields give supply
    We'll take, content, the roasting-ear,
    Nor yield us yet to craven fear,
  But still press on, to do or die:"


* * * * *


[July 3, 1863.]

  A cloud possessed the hollow field.
  The gathering battle's smoky shield.
  Athwart the gloom the lightning flashed,
  And through the cloud some horsemen dashed,
  And from the heights the thunder pealed.

  Then at the brief command of Lee
  Moved out that matchless infantry,
  With Pickett leading grandly down,
  To rush against the roaring crown
  Of those dread heights of destiny.

  Far heard above the angry guns
  A cry across the tumult runs,—
  The voice that rang through Shiloh's woods
  And Chickamanga's solitudes,
  The fierce South cheering on her sons!

  Ah, how the withering tempest blew
  Against the front of Pettigrew!
  A Khamsin wind that scorched and singed
  Like that infernal flame that fringed
  The British squares at Waterloo!

  A thousand fell where Kemper led;
  A thousand died where Garnett bled:
  In blinding flame and strangling smoke
  The remnant through the batteries broke
  And crossed the works with Armistead.

  "Once more in Glory's van with me!"
  Virginia cried to Tennessee;
  "We two together, come what may,
  Shall stand upon these works to-day!"
  (The reddest day in history.)

  Brave Tennessee! In reckless way
  Virginia heard her comrade say:
  "Close round this rent and riddled rag!"
  What time she set her battle-flag
  Amid the guns of Doubleday.

  But who shall break the guards that wait
  Before the awful face of Fate?
  The tattered standards of the South
  Were shrivelled at the cannon's mouth,
  And all her hopes were desolate.

  In vain the Tennesseean set
  His breast against the bayonet!
  In vain Virginia charged and raged,
  A tigress in her wrath uncaged,
  Till all the hill was red and wet!

  Above the bayonets, mixed and crossed,
  Men saw a gray, gigantic ghost
  Receding through the battle-cloud,
  And heard across the tempest loud
  The death-cry of a nation lost!

  The brave went down! Without disgrace
  They leaped to Ruin's red embrace.
  They only heard Fame's thunders wake,
  And saw the dazzling sun-burst break
  In smiles on Glory's bloody face!

  They fell, who lifted up a hand
  And bade the sun in heaven to stand!
  They smote and fell, who set the bars
  Against the progress of the stars,
  And stayed the march of Motherland!

  They stood, who saw the future come
  On through the fight's delirium!
  They smote and stood, who held the hope
  Of nations on that slippery slope
  Amid the cheers of Christendom.

  God lives! He forged the iron will
    That clutched and held that trembling hill.
  God lives and reigns! He built and lent
  The heights for Freedom's battlement
  Where floats her flag in triumph still!

  Fold up the banners! Smelt the guns!
  Love rules. Her gentler purpose runs.
  A mighty mother turns in tears
  The pages of her battle years,
  Lamenting all her fallen sons!


* * * * *


[An incident in one of the battles in the Wilderness at the beginning of the campaign of 1864.]

  Dawn of a pleasant morning in May
  Broke through the Wilderness cool and gray;
  While perched in the tallest tree-tops, the birds
  Were carolling Mendelssohn's "Songs without Words."

  Far from the haunts of men remote,
  The brook brawled on with a liquid note;
  And Nature, all tranquil and lovely, wore
  The smile of the spring, as in Eden of yore.

  Little by little, as daylight increased,
  And deepened the roseate flush in the East—
  Little by little did morning reveal
  Two long glittering lines of steel;

  Where two hundred thousand bayonets gleam,
  Tipped with the light of the earliest beam,
  And the faces are sullen and grim to see
  In the hostile armies of Grant and Lee.

  All of a sudden, ere rose the sun,
  Pealed on the silence the opening gun—
  A little white puff of smoke there came,
  And anon the valley was wreathed in flame.

  Down on the left of the Rebel lines,
  Where a breastwork stands in a copse of pines,
  Before the Rebels their ranks can form,
  The Yankees have carried the place by storm.

  Stars and Stripes on the salient wave,
  Where many a hero has found a grave,
  And the gallant Confederates strive in vain
  The ground they have drenched with their blood, to regain.

  Yet louder the thunder of battle roared—
  Yet a deadlier fire on the columns poured;
  Slaughter infernal rode with Despair,
  Furies twain, through the murky air.

  Not far off, in the saddle there sat
  A gray-bearded man in a black slouched hat;
  Not much moved by the fire was he,
  Calm and resolute Robert Lee.

  Quick and watchful he kept his eye
  On the bold Rebel brigades close by,—
  Reserves that were standing (and dying) at ease,
  While the tempest of wrath toppled over the trees.

  For still with their loud, deep, bull-dog bay,
  The Yankee batteries blazed away,
  And with every murderous second that sped
  A dozen brave fellows, alas! fell dead.

  The grand old graybeard rode to the space
  Where Death and his victims stood face to face,
  And silently waved his old slouched hat—
  A world of meaning there was in that!

  "Follow me! Steady! We'll save the day!"
  This was what he seemed to say;
  And to the light of his glorious eye
  The bold brigades thus made reply:

  "We'll go forward, but you must go back "—
  And they moved not an inch in the perilous track:
  "Go to the rear, and we'll send them to hell!"
  And the sound of the battle was lost in their yell.

  Turning his bridle, Robert Lee
  Rode to the rear. Like waves of the sea,
  Bursting the dikes in their overflow,
  Madly his veterans dashed on the foe.

  And backward in terror that foe was driven,
  Their banners rent and their columns riven,
  Wherever the tide of battle rolled
  Over the Wilderness, wood and wold.

  Sunset out of a crimson sky
  Streamed o'er a field of ruddier dye,
  And the brook ran on with a purple stain,
  From the blood of ten thousand foemen slain.

  Seasons have passed since that day and year—
  Again o'er its pebbles the brook runs clear,
  And the field in a richer green is drest
  Where the dead of a terrible conflict rest.

  Hushed is the roll of the Rebel drum,
  The sabres are sheathed, and the cannon are dumb;
  And Fate, with his pitiless hand, has furled
  The flag that once challenged the gaze of the world;

  But the fame of the Wilderness fight abides;
  And down into history grandly rides,
  Calm and unmoved as in battle he sat,
  The gray-bearded man in the black slouched hat.


* * * * *


  Out of the clover and blue-eyed grass
    He turned them into the river-lane;
  One after another he let them pass,
    Then fastened the meadow bars again.

  Under the willows, and over the hill,
    He patiently followed their sober pace;
  The merry whistle for once was still,
    And something shadowed the sunny face.

  Only a boy! and his father had said
    He never could let his youngest go;
  Two already were lying dead
    Under the feet of the trampling foe.

  But after the evening work was done,
    And the frogs were loud in the meadow-swamp,
  Over his shoulder he slung his gun
    And stealthily followed the foot-path damp,

  Across the clover and through the wheat
    With resolute heart and purpose grim,
  Though cold was the dew on his hurrying feet,
    And the blind bat's flitting startled him.

  Thrice since then had the lanes been white,
    And the orchards sweet with apple-bloom;
  And now, when the cows came back at night,
    The feeble father drove them home.

  For news had come to the lonely farm
    That three were lying where two had lain;
  And the old man's tremulous, palsied arm
    Could never lean on a son's again.

  The summer day grew cool and late,
    He went for the cows when the work was done;
  But down the lane, as he opened the gate,
    He saw them coming one by one,—

  Brindle, Ebony, Speckle, and Bess,
    Shaking their horns in the evening wind;
  Cropping the buttercups out of the grass,—
  But who was it following close behind?

  Loosely swung in the idle air
    The empty sleeve of army blue;
  And worn and pale, from the crisping hair,
    Looked out a face that the father knew.

  For gloomy prisons will sometimes yawn,
    And yield their dead unto life again;
  And the day that comes with a cloudy dawn
    In golden glory at last may wane.

  The great tears sprang to their meeting eyes;
    For the heart must speak when the lips are dumb;
  And under the silent evening skies
    Together they followed the cattle home.


* * * * *


[Footnote A: This song was sung by thousands of Sherman's soldiers after the march, and had the honor of giving its name to the campaign it celebrates. Its author had been one of Sherman's army, and was captured at the battle of Chattanooga. While a prisoner he escaped, disguised himself in a Confederate uniform, went to the Southern army, and witnessed some of the fierce fighting about Atlanta. He was discovered and sent back to prison at Columbia, S.C., where he wrote the song. He soon escaped again, rejoined Sherman's army, and for a time served on General Sherman's staff. From Cape Fear River he was sent North with despatches to Grant and President Lincoln, bringing the first news of Sherman's successes in the Carolinas.]

[May 4 to December 21, 1864.]

  Our camp-fires shone bright on the mountains
    That frowned on the river below,
  While we stood by our guns in the morning
    And eagerly watched for the foe,
  When a rider came out of the darkness
    That hung over the mountain and tree,
  And shouted, "Boys, up and be ready!
    For Sherman will march to the sea."

  Then cheer upon cheer for bold Sherman
    Went up from each valley and glen,
  And the bugles re-echoed the music
    That came from the lips of the men;
  For we knew that the stars in our banner
    More bright in their splendor would be,
  And that blessings from Northland would greet us
    When Sherman marched down to the sea.

  Then forward, boys, forward to battle,
    We marched on our wearisome way,
  We stormed the wild hills of Resaca;
    God bless those who fell on that day!
  Then Kenesaw, dark in its glory,
    Frowned down on the flag of the free,
  But the East and the West bore our standards,
    And Sherman marched on to the sea.

  Still onward we pressed, till our banners
    Swept out from Atlanta's grim walls,
  And the blood of the patriot dampened
    The soil where the traitor flag falls;
  Yet we paused not to weep for the fallen,
    Who slept by each river and tree;
  We twined them a wreath of the laurel
    As Sherman marched down to the sea.

  Oh! proud was our army that morning,
    That stood where the pine darkly towers,
  When Sherman said: "Boys, you are weary;
    This day fair Savannah is ours!"
  Then sang we a song for our chieftain,
    That echoed o'er river and lea,
  And the stars in our banner shone brighter
    When Sherman marched down to the sea.


* * * * *



  Ho! pony. Down the lonely road
    Strike now your cheeriest pace!
  The woods on fire do not burn higher
    Than burns my anxious face;
  Far have you sped, but all this night
    Must feel my nervous spur;
  If we be late, the world must wait
    The tidings we aver:—
  To home and hamlet, town and hearth,
    To thrill child, mother, man,
  I carry to the waiting North
    Great news from Sheridan!

  The birds are dead among the pines,
    Slain by the battle fright,
  Prone in the road the steed reclines
    That never readied the fight;
  Yet on we go,—the wreck below
    Of many a tumbled wain,—
  By ghastly pools where stranded mules
    Die, drinking of the rain;
  With but my list of killed and missed
    I spur my stumbling nag,
  To tell of death at many a tryst,
    But victory to the flag!

  "Halt! who comes there? The countersign!"—
    "A friend."—"Advance! The fight,—
  How goes it, say?"—"We won the day!"—
    "Huzza! Pass on!"—"Good-night!"—
  And parts the darkness on before,
    And down the mire we tramp,
  And the black sky is painted o'er
    With many a pulsing camp;
  O'er stumps and ruts, by ruined huts,
    Where ghosts look through the gloam,—
  Behind my tread I hear the dead
    Follow the news toward home!

  The hunted souls I see behind,
    In swamp and in ravine,
  Whose cry for mercy thrills the wind
    Till cracks the sure carbine;
  The moving lights, which scare the dark,
    And show the trampled place
  Where, in his blood, some mother's bud
    Turns up his young, dead face;
  The captives spent, whose standards rent
    The conqueror parades,
  As at the Five Forks roads arrive
    The General's dashing aides.

  O wondrous Youth! through this grand ruth
    Runs my boy's life its thread;
  The General's fame, the battle's name,
    The rolls of maimed and dead
  I bear, with my thrilled soul astir,
    And lonely thoughts and fears;
  And am but History's courier
    To bind the conquering years;
  A battle-ray, through ages gray
    To light to deeds sublime,
  And flash the lustre of this day
   Down all the aisles of Time!

  Ho! pony,—'tis the signal gun
    The night-assault decreed;
  On Petersburg the thunderbolts
    Crash from the lines of Meade;
  Fade the pale, frightened stars o'erhead,
    And shrieks the bursting air;
  The forest foliage, tinted red,
    Grows ghastlier in the glare;
  Though in her towers, reached her last hours,
    Rocks proud Rebellion's crest—
  The world may sag, if but my nag
    Get in before the rest!

  With bloody flank, and fetlocks dank,
    And goad, and lash, and shout—
  Great God! as every hoof-beat falls
    A hundred lives beat out!
  As weary as this broken steed
    Reels down the corduroys,
  So, weary, fight for morning light
    Our hot and grimy boys;
  Through ditches wet, o'er parapet
    And guns barbette, they catch
  The last, lost breach; and I,—I reach
    The mail with my despatch!

  Sure it shall speed, the land to read,
    As sped the happiest shell!
  The shot I send strike the world's end;
    This tells my pony's knell;
  His long race run, the long war done,
    My occupation gone,—
  Above his bier, prone on the pier,
    The vultures fleck the dawn.
  Still, rest his bones where soldiers dwell,
    Till the Long Roll they catch.
  He fell the day that Richmond fell,
    And took the first despatch!


* * * * *


[Footnote A: Sung by negro troops when entering Richmond. George Gary Eggleston, in his collection of "American War Ballads," says that it soon found favor among the people and "was sung with applause by young men and maidens in well-nigh every house in Virginia."]

  Say, darkeys, hab you seen de massa,
    Wid de muffstash on he face,
  Go long de road some time dis mornin',
    Like he gwine leabe de place?
  He see de smoke way up de ribber
    Whar de Lincum gunboats lay;
  He took he hat an' leff berry sudden,
    And I spose he's runned away.

      De massa run, ha, ha!
      De darkey stay, ho, ho!
      It mus' be now de kingdum comin',
      An' de yar ob jubilo.

  He six foot one way an' two foot todder,
    An' he weigh six hundred poun';
  His coat so big he couldn't pay de tailor,
    An' it won't reach half way roun';
  He drill so much dey calls him cap'n,
    An he git so mighty tanned,
  I spec he'll try to fool dem Yankees,
    For to tink he contraband,
      De massa run, ha, ha!
      De darkey stay, ho, ho!
      It mus' be now de kingdum comin',
      An' de yar ob jubilo.

  De darkeys got so lonesome libb'n
    In de log hut on de lawn,
  Dey moved dere tings into massa's parlor
    For to keep it while he gone.
  Dar's wine an' cider in de kitchin,
    An' de darkeys dey hab some,
  I spec it will be all fiscated,
    When de Lincum sojers come.
      De massa run, ha, ha!
      De darkey stay, ho, ho!
     It mus' be now de kingdum comin',
     An' de yar ob jubilo.

  De oberseer he makes us trubble,
    An' he dribe us roun' a spell,
  We lock him up in de smoke-house cellar,
    Wid de key flung in de well.
  De whip am lost, de han'-cuff broke,
    But de massy hab his pay;
  He big an' ole enough for to know better
    Dan to went an' run away.
      De massa run, ha, ha!
      De darkey stay, ho, ho!
      It mus' be now de kingdum comin',
      An' de yar ob jubilo.


* * * * *


  Furl that Banner, for 'tis weary;
  Round its staff 'tis drooping dreary:
    Furl it, fold it,—it is best;
  For there's not a man to wave it,
  And there's not a sword to save it,
  And there's not one left to lave it
  In the blood which heroes gave it,
  And its foes now scorn and brave it:
    Furl it, hide it,—let it rest!

  Take that Banner down! 'tis tattered;
  Broken is its staff and shattered;
  And the valiant hosts are scattered,
    Over whom it floated high.
  Oh, 'tis hard for us to fold it,
  Hard to think there's none to hold it,
  Hard that those who once unrolled it
    Now must furl it with a sigh!

  Furl that Banner—furl it sadly!
  Once ten thousands hailed it gladly,
  And ten thousands wildly, madly,
    Swore it should forever wave;
  Swore that foeman's sword should never
  Hearts like theirs entwined dissever,
  Till that flag should float forever
    O'er their freedom or their grave!

  Furl it! for the hands that grasped it,
  And the hearts that fondly clasped it,
    Cold and dead are lying low;
  And that Banner—it is trailing,
  While around it sounds the wailing
    Of its people in their woe.

  For, though conquered, they adore it,—
  Love the cold, dead hands that bore it,
  Weep for those who fell before it,
  Pardon those who trailed and tore it;
  And oh, wildly they deplore it,
    Now to furl and fold it so!

  Furl that Banner! True, 'tis gory,
  Yet 'tis wreathed around with glory,
  And 't will live in song and story
    Though its folds are in the dust!
  For its fame on brightest pages,
  Penned by poets and by sages,
  Shall go sounding down the ages—
    Furl its folds though now we must.

  Furl that Banner, softly, slowly!
  Treat it gently—it is holy,
    For it droops above the dead.
  Touch it not—unfold it never;
  Let it droop there, furled forever,—
      For its people's hopes are fled!


* * * * *


  There hangs a sabre, and there a rein,
  With a rusty buckle and green curb chain;
  A pair of spurs on the old gray wall,
  And a mouldy saddle—well, that is all.

  Come out to the stable—it is not far;
  The moss grown door is hanging ajar.
  Look within! There's an empty stall,
  Where once stood a charger, and that is all.

  The good black horse came riderless home,
  Flecked with blood drops as well as foam;
  See yonder hillock where dead leaves fall;
  The good black horse pined to death—that's all.

  All? O, God! it is all I can speak.
  Question me not—I am old and weak;
  His sabre and his saddle hang on the wall,
  And his horse pined to death—I have told you all.


* * * * *


  Within the sober realm of leafless trees,
    The russet year inhaled the dreamy air;
  Like some tanned reaper, in his hour of ease,
    When all the fields are lying brown and bare.

  The gray barns looking from their hazy hills,
    O'er the dun waters widening in the vales,
  Sent down the air a greeting to the mills
    On the dull thunder of alternate flails.

  All sights were mellowed and all sounds subdued,
    The hills seemed further and the stream sang low,
  As in a dream the distant woodman hewed
    His winter log with many a muffled blow.

  The embattled forests, erewhile armed with gold,
    Their banners bright with every martial hue,
  Now stood like some sad, beaten host of old,
    Withdrawn afar in Time's remotest blue.

  On slumb'rous wings the vulture held his flight;
    The dove scarce heard its sighing mate's complaint;
  And, like a star slow drowning in the light,
    The village church-vane seemed to pale and faint.

  The sentinel-cock upon the hillside crew,—
    Crew thrice,—and all was stiller than before;
  Silent, till some replying warden blew
    His alien horn, and then was heard no more.

  Where erst the jay, within the elm's tall crest,
    Made garrulous trouble round her unfledged young;
  And where the oriole hung her swaying nest,
    By every light wind like a censer swung;—

  Where sang the noisy martens of the eaves,
    The busy swallows circling ever near,—
  Foreboding, as the rustic mind believes,
    An early harvest and a plenteous year;—

  Where every bird which charmed the vernal feast
    Shook the sweet slumber from its wings at morn,
  To warn the reaper of the rosy east:—
    All now was sunless, empty, and forlorn.

  Alone from out the stubble piped the quail,
    And croaked the crow through all the dreamy gloom;
  Alone the pheasant, drumming in the vale,
    Made echo to the distant cottage-loom.

  There was no bud, no bloom upon the bowers;
    The spiders moved their thin shrouds night by night,
  The thistle-down, the only ghost of flowers,
    Sailed slowly by,—passed noiseless out of sight.

  Amid all this—in this most cheerless air,
    And where the woodbine shed upon the porch
  Its crimson leaves, as if the Year stood there
    Firing the floor with his inverted torch,—

  Amid all this, the centre of the scene,
    The white-haired matron with monotonous tread
  Plied the swift wheel, and with her joyless mien
    Sat, like a fate, and watched the flying thread,

  She had known Sorrow,—he had walked with her,
    Oft supped, and broke the bitter ashen crust;
  And in the dead leaves still she heard the stir
    Of his black mantle trailing in the dust.

  While yet her cheek was bright with summer bloom,
    Her country summoned and she gave her all;
  And twice War bowed to her his sable plume,—
    Re-gave the swords to rust upon the wall.

  Re-gave the swords, but not the hand that drew
    And struck for Liberty the dying blow;
  Nor him who, to his sire and country true,
    Fell mid the ranks of the invading foe.

  Long, but not loud, the droning wheel went on,
    Like the low murmur of a hive at noon;
  Long, but not loud, the memory of the gone
    Breathed through her lips a sad and tremulous tune.

  At last the thread was snapped; her head was bowed;
    Life dropt the distaff through his hands serene;
  And loving neighbors smoothed her careful shroud,
    While Death and Winter closed the autumn scene.


* * * * *


[The Spanish-American War, 1898.]

  A cheer and salute for the Admiral, and here's to the Captain bold,
  And never forget the Commodore's debt when the deeds of might are
  They stand to the deck through the battle's wreck when the great
          shells roar and screech—
  And never they fear when the foe is near to practise what they
  But off with your hat and three times three for Columbia's true-blue
  The men below who batter the foe—the men behind the guns!

  Oh, light and merry of heart are they when they swing into port once
  When, with more than enough of the "green-backed stuff," they start
          for their leave-o'-shore;
  And you'd think, perhaps, that the blue-bloused chaps who loll along
          the street
  Are a tender bit, with salt on it, for some fierce "mustache" to
  Some warrior bold, with straps of gold, who dazzles and fairly stuns
  The modest worth of the sailor boys—the lads who serve the guns.

  But say not a word till the shot is heard that tells the fight is
  Till the long, deep roar grows more and more from the ships of
          "Yank" and "Don,"
  Till over the deep the tempests sweep of fire and bursting shell,
  And the very air is a mad Despair in the throes of a living hell;
  Then down, deep down, in the mighty ship, unseen by the midday suns,
  You'll find the chaps who are giving the raps—the men behind the

  Oh, well they know how the cyclones blow that they loose from their
          cloud of death,
  And they know is heard the thunder-word their fierce ten-incher
  The steel decks rock with the lightning shock, and shake with the
          great recoil,
  And the sea grows red with the blood of the dead and reaches for his
  But not till the foe has gone below or turns his prow and runs,
  Shall the voice of peace bring sweet release to the men behind the


* * * * *


[May I, 1898.]

  By Cavité on the bay
  'Twas the Spanish squadron lay;
  And the red dawn was creeping
  O'er the city that lay sleeping
  To the east, like a bride, in the May.
  There was peace at Manila,
  In the May morn at Manila,—
  When ho, the Spanish admiral
  Awoke to find our line
  Had passed by gray Corregidor,
  Had laughed at shoal and mine,
  And flung to the sky its banners
  With "Remember" for the sign!

  With the ships of Spain before
  In the shelter of the shore,
  And the forts on the right,
  They drew forward to the fight,
  And the first was the gallant Commodore;
  In the bay of Manila,
  In the doomed bay of Manila—
  With succor half the world away,
  No port beneath that sky,
  With nothing but their ships and guns
  And Yankee pluck to try,
  They had left retreat behind them,
  They had come to win or die!

* * * * *

  For we spoke at Manila,
  We said it at Manila,
  Oh be ye brave, or be ye strong,
  Ye build your ships in vain;
  The children of the sea queen's brood
  Will not give up the main;
  We hold the sea against the world
  As we held it against Spain.

  Be warned by Manila,
  Take warning by Manila,
  Ye may trade by land, ye may fight by land,
  Ye may hold the land in fee;
  But not go down to the sea in ships
  To battle with the free;
  For England and America
  Will keep and hold the sea!


* * * * *


* * * * *


  Daughter of God! that sitt'st on high
  Amid the dances of the sky,
  And guidest with thy gentle sway
  The planets on their tuneful way;
    Sweet Peace! shall ne'er again
  The smile of thy most holy face,
  From thine ethereal dwelling-place,
  Rejoice the wretched, weary race
    Of discord-breathing men?
  Too long, O gladness-giving Queen!
  Thy tarrying in heaven has been;
  Too long o'er this fair blooming world
  The flag of blood has been unfurled,
    Polluting God's pure day;
  Whilst, as each maddening people reels,
  War onward drives his scythed wheels,
  And at his horses' bloody heels
    Shriek Murder and Dismay.

  Oft have I wept to hear the cry
  Of widow wailing bitterly;
  To see the parent's silent tear
  For children fallen beneath the spear;
    And I have felt so sore
  The sense of human guilt and woe,
  That I, in Virtue's passioned glow,
  Have cursed (my soul was wounded so)
    The shape of man I bore!
  Then come from thy serene abode,
  Thou gladness-giving child of God!
  And cease the world's ensanguined strife,
  And reconcile my soul to life;
    For much I long to see,
  Ere I shall to the grave descend,
  Thy hand its blessed branch extend,
  And to the world's remotest end
    Wave Love and Harmony!


* * * * *



  Now is the winter of our discontent
  Made glorious summer by this sun of York,
  And all the clouds that lowered upon our house
  In the deep bosom of the ocean buried.
  Now are our brows bound with victorious wreaths;
  Our bruisèd arms hung up for monuments;
  Our stern alarums changed to merry meetings,
  Our dreadful marches to delightful measures.
  Grim-visaged War hath smoothed his wrinkled front.
  And now, instead of mounting barbed steeds
  To fright the souls of fearful adversaries,
  He capers nimbly in a lady's chamber,
  To the lascivious pleasing of a lute.


* * * * *


  "Put up the sword!" the voice of Christ once more
  Speaks, in the pauses of the cannon's roar,
  O'er fields of corn by fiery sickles reaped
  And left dry ashes; over trenches heaped
  With nameless dead; o'er cities starving slow
  Under a rain of fire; through wards of woe
  Down which a groaning diapason runs
  From tortured brothers, husbands, lovers, sons
  Of desolate women in their far-off homes,
  Waiting to hear the step that never comes!
  O men and brothers! let that voice be heard.
  War fails, try peace; put up the useless sword!

  Fear not the end. There is a story told
  In Eastern tents, when autumn nights grow cold,
  And round the fire the Mongol shepherds sit
  With grave responses listening unto it:
  Once on the errands of his mercy bent,
  Buddha, the holy and benevolent,
  Met a fell monster, huge and fierce of look,
  Whose awful voice the hills and forests shook.

  "O son of peace!" the giant cried, "thy fate
  Is sealed at last, and love shall yield to hate."
  The unarmed Buddha looking, with no trace
  Of fear or anger, in the monster's face,
  In pity said, "Poor fiend, even thee I love."
  Lo! as he spake the sky-tall terror sank
  To hand-breadth size; the huge abhorrence shrank
  Into the form and fashion of a dove;
  And where the thunder of its rage was heard,
  Circling above him sweetly sang the bird:
  "Hate hath no harm for love," so ran the song,
  "And peace unweaponed conquers every wrong!"


* * * * *


  Old Tubal Cain was a man of might,
    In the days when earth was young;
  By the fierce red light of his furnace bright,
    The strokes of his hammer rung:
  And he lifted high his brawny hand
    On the iron glowing clear,
  Till the sparks rushed out in scarlet showers,
    As he fashioned the sword and the spear.
  And he sang: "Hurrah for my handiwork!
    Hurrah for the spear and the sword!
  Hurrah for the hand that shall wield them well,
    For he shall be king and lord."

  To Tubal Cain came many a one,
    As he wrought by his roaring fire,
  And each one prayed for a strong steel blade
    As the crown of his desire:
  And he made them weapons sharp and strong,
    Till they shouted loud for glee,
  And gave him gifts of pearl and gold,
    And spoils of the forest free.
  And they sang: "Hurrah for Tubal Cain,
    Who hath given us strength anew!
  Hurrah for the smith, hurrah for the fire,
    And hurrah for the metal true!"

  But a sudden change came o'er his heart,
    Ere the setting of the sun,
  And Tubal Cain was filled with pain
    For the evil he had done;
  He saw that men, with rage and hate,
    Made war upon their kind,
  That the land was red with the blood they shed,
    In their lust for carnage blind.
  And he said: "Alas! that ever I made,
    Or that skill of mine should plan,
  The spear and the sword for men whose joy
    Is to slay their fellow-man!"

  And for many a day old Tubal Cain
    Sat brooding o'er his woe;
  And his hand forbore to smite the ore,
    And his furnace smouldered low.
  But he rose at last with a cheerful face,
    And a bright courageous eye,
  And bared his strong right arm for work,
    While the quick flames mounted high.
  And he sang: "Hurrah for my handiwork!"
    And the red sparks lit the air;
  "Not alone for the blade was the bright steel made,"—
    And he fashioned the first ploughshare.

  And men, taught wisdom from the past,
    In friendship joined their hands,
  Hung the sword in the hall, the spear on the wall,
    And ploughed the willing lands;
  And sang: "Hurrah for Tubal Cain!
    Our stanch good friend is he;
  And for the ploughshare and the plough
    To him our praise shall be.
  But while oppression lifts its head,
    Or a tyrant would be lord,
  Though we may thank him for the plough,
    We'll not forget the sword!"


* * * * *


  Where is the grave of Sir Arthur O'Kellyn?
  Where may the grave of that good man be?—
  By the side of a spring, on the breast of Helvellyn,
  Under the twigs of a young birch-tree!
  The oak that in summer was sweet to hear,
  And rustled its leaves in the fall of the year,
  And whistled and roared in the winter alone,
  Is gone,—and the birch in its stead is grown.—
  The knight's bones are dust,
  And his good sword rust;—
  His soul is with the saints, I trust.


* * * * *


"To fall on the battle-field fighting for my dear country,—that would not be hard."—The Neighbors.

    O no, no,—let me lie
  Not on a field of battle when I die!
    Let not the iron tread
  Of the mad war-horse crush my helmèd head;
    Nor let the reeking knife,
  That I have drawn against a brother's life,
    Be in my hand when Death
  Thunders along, and tramples me beneath
    His heavy squadron's heels,
  Or gory felloes of his cannon's wheels.

    From such a dying bed,
  Though o'er it float the stripes of white and red,
    And the bald eagle brings
  The clustered stars upon his wide-spread wings
    To sparkle in my sight,
  O, never let my spirit take her flight!

    I know that beauty's eye
  Is all the brighter where gay pennants fly,
    And brazen helmets dance,
  And sunshine flashes on the lifted lance;
    I know that bards have sung,
  And people shouted till the welkin rung,
    In honor of the brave
  Who on the battle-field have found a grave;
    I know that o'er their bones
  How grateful hands piled monumental stones.
    Some of those piles I've seen:
  The one at Lexington upon the green
    Where the first blood was shed,
  And to my country's independence led;
    And others, on our shore,
  The "Battle Monument" at Baltimore,
    And that on Bunker's Hill.
  Ay, and abroad, a few more famous still;
    Thy "tomb," Themistocles,
  That looks out yet upon the Grecian seas,
    And which the waters kiss
  That issue from the gulf of Salamis.
    And thine, too, have I seen,
  Thy mound of earth, Patroclus, robed in green,
    That, like a natural knoll,
  Sheep climb and nibble over as they stroll,
    Watched by some turbaned boy,
  Upon the margin of the plain of Troy.
    Such honors grace the bed,
  I know, whereon the warrior lays his head,
    And hears, as life ebbs out,
  The conquered flying, and the conqueror's shout;
    But as his eye grows dim,
  What is a column or a mound to him?
    What, to the parting soul.
  The mellow note of bugles? What the roll
    Of drums? No, let me die
  Where the blue heaven bends o'er me lovingly,
    And the soft summer air,
  As it goes by me, stirs my thin white hair,
    And from my forehead dries
  The death-damp as it gathers, and the skies
    Seem waiting to receive
  My soul to their clear depths! Or let me leave
    The world when round my bed
  Wife, children, weeping friends are gatherèd,
    And the calm voice of prayer
  And holy hymning shall my soul prepare
    To go and be at rest
  With kindred spirits,—spirits who have blessed
    The human brotherhood
  By labors, cares, and counsels for their good.


* * * * *


  Come hither lads and hearken,
    for a tale there is to tell,
  Of the wonderful days a-coming,
    when all shall be better than well.

  And the tale shall be told of a country,
    a land in the midst of the sea,
  And folk shall call it England
    in the days that are going to be.

  There more than one in a thousand,
    in the days that are yet to come,
  Shall have some hope of the morrow,
    some joy of the ancient home.

  For then—laugh not, but listen
    to this strange tale of mine—
  All folk that are in England
    shall be better lodged than swine.

  Then a man shall work and bethink him,
    and rejoice in the deeds of his hand;
  Nor yet come home in the even
    too faint and weary to stand.

  Men in that time a-coming
    shall work and have no fear
  For to-morrow's lack of earning,
    and the hunger-Wolf anear.

  I tell you this for a wonder,
    that no man then shall be glad
  Of his fellow's fall and mishap,
    to snatch at the work he had.

  For that which the worker winneth
    shall then be his indeed,
  Nor shall half be reaped for nothing
    by him that sowed no seed.

  Oh, strange new wonderful justice!
    But for whom shall we gather the gain?
  For ourselves and for each of our fellows,
    and no hand shall labor in vain.

  Then all Mine and all Thine shall be Ours,
    and no more shall any man crave
  For riches that serve for nothing
    but to fetter a friend for a slave.

  And what wealth then shall be left us,
    when none shall gather gold
  To buy his friend in the market,
    and pinch and pine the sold?

  Nay, what save the lovely city,
    and the little house on the hill,
  And the wastes and the woodland beauty,
    and the happy fields we till;

  And the homes of ancient stories,
    the tombs of the mighty dead;
  And the wise men seeking out marvels,
    and the poet's teeming head;

  And the painter's hand of wonder,
    and the marvellous fiddle-bow,
  And the banded choirs of music:
    all those that do and know.

  For all these shall be ours and all men's;
    nor shall any lack a share
  Of the toil and the gain of living,
    in the days when the world grows fair.

  Ah! such are the days that shall be!
    But what are the deeds of to-day,
  In the days of the years we dwell in,
    that wear our lives away?

  Why, then, and for what are we waiting?
    There are three words to speak:
  We will it, and what is the foeman
    but the dream-strong wakened and weak?

  Oh, why and for what are we waiting,
    while our brothers droop and die,
  And on every wind of the heavens
    a wasted life goes by?

  How long shall they reproach us,
    where crowd on crowd they dwell,—
  Poor ghosts of the wicked city,
    the gold-crushed hungry hell?

  Through squalid life they labored,
    in sordid grief they died,—
  Those sons of a mighty mother,
    those props of England's pride.

  They are gone; there is none can undo it,
    nor save our souls from the curse:
  But many a million cometh,
    and shall they be better or worse?

  It is we must answer and hasten,
    and open wide the door
  For the rich man's hurrying terror,
    and the slow-foot hope of the poor.

  Yea, the voiceless wrath of the wretched,
    and their unlearned discontent,—
  We must give it voice and wisdom
    till the waiting-tide be spent.

  Come then, since all things call us,
    the living and the dead,
  And o'er the weltering tangle
    a glimmering light is shed.

  Come then, let us cast off fooling,
    and put by ease and rest,
  For the Cause alone is worthy
    till the good days bring the best.

  Come, join in the only battle
    wherein no man can fail,
  Where whoso fadeth and dieth,
    yet his deed shall still prevail.

  Ah! come, cast off all fooling,
    for this, at least, we know:
  That the dawn and the day is coming,
    and forth the banners go.


* * * * *


  On a lone barren isle, where the wild roaring billows
    Assail the stern rock, and the loud tempests rave,
  The hero lies still, while the dew-drooping willows,
    Like fond weeping mourners, lean over the grave.
  The lightnings may flash, and the loud thunders rattle:
    He heeds not, he hears not, he's free from all pain;—
  He sleeps his last sleep—he has fought his last battle!
    No sound can awake him to glory again!

  O shade of the mighty, where now are the legions
    That rushed but to conquer when thou led'st them on?
  Alas! they have perished in far hilly regions,
    And all save the fame of their triumph is gone!
  The trumpet may sound, and the loud cannon rattle!
    They heed not, they hear not, they're free from all pain:
  They sleep their last sleep, they have fought their last battle!
    No sound can awake them to glory again!

  Yet, spirit immortal, the tomb cannot bind thee,
    For, like thine own eagle that soared to the sun,
  Thou springest from bondage and leavest behind thee
    A name which before thee no mortal had won.
  Though nations may combat, and war's thunders rattle,
    No more on the steed wilt thou sweep o'er the plain:
  Thou sleep'st thy last sleep, thou hast fought thy last battle!
    No sound can awake thee to glory again!


* * * * *


[In Bavaria, August 13, 1704, between the English and Austrians on one side, under the Duke of Marlborough and Prince Eugene, and the French and Bavarians on the other side, led by Marshal Tallart and the Elector of Bavaria. The latter party was defeated, and the schemes of Louis XIV. of France were materially checked.]

  It was a summer evening,—
    Old Kaspar's work was done,
  And he before his cottage door
    Was sitting in the sun;
  And by him sported on the green
  His little grandchild Wilhelmine.

  She saw her brother Peterkin
    Roll something large and round,
  Which he beside the rivulet,
    In playing there, had found;
  He came to ask what he had found
  That was so large and smooth and round.

  Old Kaspar took it from the boy,
    Who stood expectant by;
  And then the old man shook his head,
    And, with a natural sigh,—
  "'Tis some poor fellow's skull," said he,
  "Who fell in the great victory.

  "I find them in the garden,
    For there's many hereabout;
  And often, when I go to plough,
    The ploughshare turns them out;
  For many thousand men," said he,
    "Were slain in the great victory."

  "Now tell us what 'twas all about."
    Young Peterkin he cries;
  And little Wilhelmine looks up
    With wonder-waiting eyes,—
  "Now tell us all about the war,
  And what they fought each other for."

  "It was the English," Kaspar cried,
    "Who put the French to rout;
  But what they fought each other for
    I could not well make out;
  But everybody said," quoth he,
  "That 'twas a famous victory.

  "My father lived at Blenheim then,
    Yon little stream hard by;
  They burnt his dwelling to the ground,
    And he was forced to fly;
  So with his wife and child he fled,
  Nor had he where to rest his head.

  "With fire and sword the country round
    Was wasted far and wide;
  And many a childing mother there,
    And new-born baby died;
  But things like that, you know, must be
  At every famous victory.

  "They say it was a shocking sight
    After the field was won,—
  For many thousand bodies here
    Lay rotting in the sun;
  But things like that, you know must be
  After a famous victory.

  "Great praise the Duke of Marlborough won,
    And our good Prince Eugene."
  "Why, 'twas a very wicked thing!"
    Said little Wilhelmine.
  "Nay, nay, my little girl!" quoth he,
  "It was a famous victory.

  "And everybody praised the duke
    Who this great fight did win."
  "But what good came of it at last?"
    Quoth little Peterkin.
  "Why, that I cannot tell," said he;
  "But 'twas a famous victory."


* * * * *



  England, I stand on thy imperial ground
    Not all a stranger; as thy bugles blow,
    I feel within my blood old battles flow,—
  The blood whose ancient founts are in thee found
  Still surging dark against the Christian bound
    While Islam presses; well its peoples know
    Thy heights that watch them wandering below:
  I think how Lucknow heard their gathering sound.

  I turn and meet the cruel, turbaned face.
    England! 'tis sweet to be so much thy son!
  I feel the conqueror in my blood and race;
    Last night Trafalgar awed me, and to-day
  Gibraltar wakened; hark, thy evening gun
    Startles the desert over Africa.


  Thou art the rock of empire set mid-seas
    Between the East and West, that God has built;
    Advance thy Roman borders where thou wilt,
  While run thy armies true with his decrees;
  Law, justice, liberty,—great gifts are these.
    Watch that they spread where English blood is spilt,
    Lest, mixed and sullied with his country's guilt
  The soldier's life-stream flow, and Heaven displease!

  Two swords there are: one naked, apt to smite,
    Thy blade of war; and, battle-storied, one
  Rejoices in the sheath, and hides from light.
    American I am; would wars were done!
  Now westward, look, my country bids good night,—
    Peace to the world, from ports without a gun!


* * * * *


[Dedication of a monument to Kentucky volunteers, killed at Buena
Vista, Mexico.]

  The muffled drum's sad roll has beat
    The soldier's last tattoo;
  No more on Life's parade shall meet
    That brave and fallen few.
  On Fame's eternal camping-ground
    Their silent tents are spread,
  And Glory guards, with solemn round,
    The bivouac of the dead.

  No rumor of the foe's advance
    Now swells upon the wind;
  No troubled thought at midnight haunts
    Of loved ones left behind;
  No vision of the morrow's strife
    The warrior's dream alarms;
  No braying horn nor screaming fife
    At dawn shall call to arms.

  Their shivered swords are red with rust,
    Their plumèd heads are bowed;
  Their haughty banner, trailed in dust,
    Is now their martial shroud.
  And plenteous funeral tears have washed
    The red stains from each brow,
  And the proud forms, by battle gashed,
    Are free from anguish now.

  The neighing troop, the flashing blade,
    The bugle's stirring blast,
  The charge, the dreadful cannonade,
    The din and shout, are past;
  Nor war's wild note nor glory's peal
    Shall thrill with fierce delight
  Those breasts that nevermore may feel
    The rapture of the fight.

  Like the fierce northern hurricane
    That sweeps his great plateau,
  Flushed with the triumph yet to gain,
    Came down the serried foe.
  Who heard the thunder of the fray
    Break o'er the field beneath,
  Knew well the watchword of that day
    Was "Victory or Death."

  Long had the doubtful conflict raged
    O'er all that stricken plain,
  For never fiercer fight had waged
    The vengeful blood of Spain;
  And still the storm of battle blew,
    Still swelled the gory tide;
  Not long, our stout old chieftain knew,
    Such odds his strength could bide.

  'Twas in that hour his stern command
    Called to a martyr's grave
  The flower of his beloved land,
    The nation's flag to save.
  By rivers of their fathers' gore
    His first-born laurels grew,
  And well he deemed the sons would pour
    Their lives for glory too.

  Full many a norther's breath has swept
    O'er Angostura's plain,
  And long the pitying sky has wept
    Above its mouldered slain.
  The raven's scream, or eagle's flight,
    Or shepherd's pensive lay,
  Alone awakes each sullen height
    That frowned o'er that dread fray.

  Sons of the Dark and Bloody Ground,
    Ye must not slumber there,
  Where stranger steps and tongues resound
    Along the heedless air.
  Your own proud land's heroic soil
    Shall be your fitter grave:
  She claims from war his richest spoil—
    The ashes of her brave.

  Thus 'neath their parent turf they rest,
    Far from the gory field,
  Borne to a Spartan mother's breast
    On many a bloody shield;
  The sunshine of their native sky
    Smiles sadly on them here,
  And kindred eyes and hearts watch by
    The heroes' sepulchre.

  Rest on, embalmed and sainted dead!
    Dear as the blood ye gave;
  No impious footstep here shall tread
    The herbage of your grave;
  Nor shall your glory be forgot
    While Fame her record keeps,
  Or Honor points the hallowed spot
    Where Valor proudly sleeps.

  Yon marble minstrel's voiceless stone
    In deathless song shall tell,
  When many a vanished age hath flown,
    The story how ye fell;
  Nor wreck, nor change, nor winter's blight,
    Nor Time's remorseless doom.
  Shall dim one ray of glory's light
    That gilds your deathless tomb.


* * * * *


  This is the arsenal. From floor to ceiling,
    Like a huge organ, rise the burnished arms;
  But from their silent pipes no anthem pealing
    Startles the villages with strange alarms.

  Ah! what a sound will rise—how wild and dreary—
    When the death-angel touches those swift keys!
  What loud lament and dismal miserere
    Will mingle with their awful symphonies!

  I hear even now the infinite fierce chorus—
    The cries of agony, the endless groan,
  Which, through the ages that have gone before us,
    In long reverberations reach our own.

  On helm and harness rings the Saxon hammer;
    Through Cimbric forest roars the Norseman's song;
  And loud amid the universal clamor,
    O'er distant deserts sounds the Tartar gong.

  I hear the Florentine, who from his palace
    Wheels out his battle-bell with dreadful din;
  And Aztec priests upon their teocallis
    Beat the wild war-drums made of serpents' skin;

  The tumult of each sacked and burning village;
    The shout that every prayer for mercy drowns;
  The soldiers' revels in the midst of pillage;
    The wail of famine in beleaguered towns;

  The bursting shell, the gateway wrenched asunder,
    The rattling musketry, the clashing blade—
  And ever and anon, in tones of thunder,
    The diapason of the cannonade.

  Is it, O man, with such discordant noises,
    With such accursed instruments as these,
  Thou drownest nature's sweet and kindly voices,
    And jarrest the celestial harmonies?

  Were half the power that fills the world with terror,
  Were half the wealth bestowed on camps and courts,
  Given to redeem the human mind from error,
    There were no need of arsenals nor forts;

  The warrior's name would be a name abhorred;
    And every nation that should lift again
  Its hand against a brother, on its forehead
    Would wear forevermore the curse of Cain!

  Down the dark future, through long generations,
    The echoing sounds grow fainter and then cease;
  And like a bell, with solemn, sweet vibrations,
    I hear once more the voice of Christ say, "Peace!"

  Peace!—and no longer from its brazen portals
    The blast of war's great organ shakes the skies;
  But, beautiful as songs of the immortals,
    The holy melodies of love arise.


* * * * *


  The softest whisperings of the scented South,
  And rust and roses in the cannon's mouth;

  And, where the thunders of the fight were born,
  The wind's sweet tenor in the standing corn;

  With song of larks, low-lingering in the loam,
  And blue skies bending over love and home.

  But still the thought: Somewhere,—upon the hills,
  Or where the vales ring with the whip-poor-wills,

  Sad wistful eyes and broken hearts that beat
  For the loved sound of unreturning feet,

  And, when the oaks their leafy banners wave,
  Dream of the battle and an unmarked grave!


* * * * *


  Once this soft turf, this rivulet's sands,
    Were trampled by a hurrying crowd,
  And fiery hearts and armèd hands
    Encountered in the battle-cloud.

  Ah! never shall the land forget
    How gushed the life-blood of her brave,—
  Gushed, warm with hope and courage yet,
    Upon the soil they fought to save.

  Now all is calm and fresh and still;
    Alone the chirp of flitting bird,
  And talk of children on the hill,
    And bell of wandering kine, are heard.

  No solemn host goes trailing by
    The black-mouthed gun and staggering wain;
  Men start not at the battle-cry,—
    O, be it never heard again!

  Soon rested those who fought; but thou
    Who minglest in the harder strife
  For truths which men receive not now,
    Thy warfare only ends with life.

  A friendless warfare! lingering long
    Through weary day and weary year;
  A wild and many-weaponed throng
    Hang on thy front and flank and rear.

  Yet nerve thy spirit to the proof,
    And blench not at thy chosen lot;
  The timid good may stand aloof,
    The sage may frown,—yet faint thou not.

  Nor heed the shaft too surely cast,
    The foul and hissing bolt of scorn;
  For with thy side shall dwell, at last,
    The victory of endurance born.

  Truth, crushed to earth, shall rise again,—
    The eternal years of God are hers;
  But Error, wounded, writhes in pain,
    And dies among his worshippers.

  Yea, though thou lie upon the dust,
    When they who helped thee flee in fear,
  Die full of hope and manly trust,
    Like those who fell in battle here!

  Another hand thy sword shall wield,
    Another hand the standard wave,
  Till from the trumpet's mouth is pealed
    The blast of triumph o'er thy grave.


* * * * *


  How sleep the brave who sink to rest
  By all their country's wishes blest!
  When Spring, with dewy fingers cold,
  Returns to deck their hallowed mould,
  She there shall dress a sweeter sod
  Than Fancy's feet have ever trod.

  By fairy hands their knell is rung
  By forms unseen their dirge is sung;
  There Honor comes, a pilgrim gray,
  To bless the turf that wraps their clay;
  And Freedom shall awhile repair,
  To dwell a weeping hermit there!


* * * * *


  The angel of the nation's peace
    Has wreathed with flowers the battle-drum;
  We see the fruiting fields increase
    Where sound of war no more shall come.

  The swallow skims the Tennessee,
    Soft winds play o'er the Rapidan;
  There only echo notes of glee,
    Where gleamed a mighty army's van!

  Fair Chattanooga's wooded slope
    With summer airs is lightly stirred,
  And many a heart is warm with hope
    Where once the deep-mouthed gun was heard.

  The blue Potomac stainless rolls,
    And Mission Ridge is gemmed with fern;
  On many a height sleep gallant souls,
    And still the blooming years return.

  Thank God! unseen to outward eye,
    But felt in every freeman's breast,
  From graves where fallen comrades lie
    Ascends at Nature's wise behest,

  With springing grass and blossoms new,
    A prayer to bless the nation's life,
  To freedom's flower give brighter hue,
    And hide the awful stains of strife.

  O, Boys in Blue, we turn to you,
    The scarred and mangled who survive;
  No more we meet in grand review,
    But all the arts of freedom thrive.

  Still glows the jewel in its shrine,
    Won where the James now tranquil rolls;
  Its wealth for all, the glory thine,
    O memory of heroic souls!


* * * * *



  The fallen cause still waits,—
    Its bard has not come yet,
  His song—through one of to-morrow's gates
    Shall shine—but never set.

  But when he comes—he'll sweep
    A harp with tears all stringed,
  And the very notes he strikes will weep,
    As they come, from his hand, woe-winged.

  Ah! grand shall be his strain,
    And his songs shall fill all climes,
  And the Rebels shall rise and march again
    Down the lines of his glorious rhymes.

  And through his verse shall gleam
    The swords that flashed in vain,
  And the men who wore the gray shall seem
    To be marshalling again.

  But hush! between his words
    Peer faces sad and pale,
  And you hear the sound of broken chords
    Beat through the poet's wail.

  Through his verse the orphans cry—
    The terrible undertone!
  And the father's curse and the mother's sigh,
    And the desolate young wife's moan.

* * * * *

  I sing, with a voice too low
    To be heard beyond to-day,
  In minor keys of my people's woe;
    And my songs pass away.

  To-morrow hears them not—
    To-morrow belongs to fame:
  My songs—like the birds'—will be forgot,
    And forgotten shall be my name.

  And yet who knows! betimes
    The grandest songs depart,
  While the gentle, humble, and low-toned rhymes
    Will echo from heart to heart.


* * * * *


  When falls the soldier brave
    Dead—at the feet of wrong,—
  The poet sings, and guards his grave
    With sentinels of song.

  Songs, march! he gives command,
    Keep faithful watch and true;
  The living and dead of the Conquered Land
    Have now no guards save you.

  Grave Ballads! mark ye well!
    Thrice holy is your trust!
 Go! halt! by the fields where warriors fell,
   Rest arms! and guard their dust.

 List, Songs! your watch is long!
   The soldiers' guard was brief,
 Whilst right is right, and wrong is wrong,
   Ye may not seek relief.

 Go! wearing the gray of grief!
   Go! watch o'er the Dead in Gray!
 Go guard the private and guard the chief,
   And sentinel their clay!

 And the songs, in stately rhyme,
   And with softly sounding tread,
 Go forth, to watch for a time—a time,
   Where sleep the Deathless Dead.

 And the songs, like funeral dirge,
   In music soft and low,
 Sing round the graves,—whilst not tears surge
   From hearts that are homes of woe.

 What though no sculptured shaft
   Immortalize each brave?
 What though no monument epitaphed
   Be built above each grave?

 When marble wears away,
   And monuments are dust,—
 The songs that guard our soldiers' clay
   Will still fulfil their trust.

  With lifted head, and steady tread,
    Like stars that guard the skies,
  Go watch each bed, where rest the dead,
    Brave Songs! with sleepless eyes.


* * * * *


[Sung on the occasion of decorating the graves of the Confederate dead, at Magnolia Cemetery, Charleston, S.C.]

  Sleep sweetly in your humble graves,—
    Sleep, martyrs of a fallen cause!
  Though yet no marble column craves
    The pilgrim here to pause,

  In seeds of laurel in the earth
    The blossom of your fame is blown,
  And somewhere, waiting for its birth,
    The shaft is in the stone!

  Meanwhile, behalf the tardy years
    Which keep in trust your storied tombs,
  Behold! your sisters bring their tears,
    And these memorial blooms.

  Small tributes! but your shades will smile
    More proudly on these wreaths to-day,
  Then when some cannon-moulded pile
    Shall overlook this bay.

  Stoop, angels, hither from the skies!
    There is no holier spot of ground
  Than where defeated valor lies,
    By mourning beauty crowned!


* * * * *


[The women of Columbus, Mississippi, strewed flowers alike on the graves of the Confederate and the National soldiers.]

  By the flow of the inland river,
    Whence the fleets of iron have fled,
  Where the blades of the grave-grass quiver
    Asleep are the ranks of the dead;—
      Under the sod and the dew,
        Waiting the judgment-day;—
      Under the one, the Blue;
        Under the other, the Gray.

  These in the robing of glory,
    Those in the gloom of defeat,
  All with the battle-blood gory,
    In the dusk of eternity meet;—
      Under the sod and the dew,
        Waiting the judgment-day;—
      Under the laurel, the Blue;
        Under the willow, the Gray.

  From the silence of sorrowful hours
    The desolate mourners go,
  Lovingly laden with flowers
    Alike for the friend and the foe,—
      Under the sod and the dew,
        Waiting the judgment-day;—
      Under the roses, the Blue;
        Under the lilies, the Gray.

  So with an equal splendor
    The morning sun-rays fall,
  With a touch, impartially tender,
    On the blossoms blooming for all;—
      Under the sod and the dew,
        Waiting the judgment-day;—
      'Broidered with gold, the Blue;
        Mellowed with gold, the Gray.

  So when the summer calleth,
    On forest and field of grain
  With an equal murmur falleth
    The cooling drip of the rain;—
      Under the sod and the dew.
        Waiting the judgment-day;—
      Wet with the rain, the Blue;
        Wet with the rain, the Gray.

  Sadly, but not with upbraiding,
    The generous deed was done;
  In the storm of the years that are fading,
    No braver battle was won;—
      Under the sod and the dew,
        Waiting the judgment-day;—
      Under the blossoms, the Blue;
        Under the garlands, the Gray.

  No more shall the war-cry sever,
    Or the winding rivers be red;
  They banish our anger forever
    When they laurel the graves of our dead!
      Under the sod and the dew,
        Waiting the judgment-day;—
      Love and tears for the Blue,
        Tears and love for the Gray.


* * * * *



  Our fathers' God! from out whose hand
  The centuries fall like grains of sand,
  We meet to-day, united, free,
  And loyal to our land and Thee,
  To thank Thee for the era done,
  And trust Thee for the opening one.

  Here, where of old, by Thy design,
  The fathers spake that word of Thine
  Whose echo is the glad refrain
  Of rended bolt and falling chain,
  To grace our festal time, from all
  The zones of earth our guests we call.

  Be with us while the New World greets
  The Old World thronging all its streets,
  Unveiling all the triumphs won
  By art or toil beneath the sun;
  And unto common good ordain
  This rivalship of hand and brain.

  Thou, who hast here in concord furled
  The war flags of a gathered world,
  Beneath our Western skies fulfil
  The Orient's mission of good-will,
  And, freighted with love's Golden Fleece,
  Send back its Argonauts of peace.

  For art and labor met in truce,
  For beauty made the bride of use,
  We thank Thee; but, withal, we crave
  The austere virtues strong to save,
  The honor proof to place or gold,
  The manhood never bought nor sold!

  Oh make Thou us, through centuries long,
  In peace secure, in justice strong;
  Around our gift of freedom draw
  The safeguards of thy righteous law:
  And, cast in some diviner mould,
  Let the new cycle shame the old!


* * * * *



[Footnote A: Copyright 1904 by Robert Allan Reid.]


  O Thou, whose glorious orbs on high
    Engird the earth with splendor round,
  From out Thy secret place draw nigh
    The courts and temples of this ground;
          Eternal Light,
          Fill with Thy might
    These domes that in Thy purpose grew,
    And lift a nation's heart anew!

  Illumine Thou each pathway here,
    To show the marvels God hath wrought
  Since first Thy people's chief and seer
    Looked up with that prophetic thought,
          Bade Time unroll
          The fateful scroll,
    And empire unto Freedom gave
    From cloudland height to tropic wave.

  Poured through the gateways of the North
    Thy mighty rivers join their tide,
  And on the wings of morn sent forth
    Their mists the far-off peaks divide.
          By Thee unsealed,
          The mountains yield
    Ores that the wealth of Ophir shame,
    And gems enwrought of seven-hued flame.

  Lo, through what years the soil hath lain,
    At Thine own time to give increase—
  The greater and the lesser grain,
    The ripening boll, the myriad fleece!
          Thy creatures graze
          Appointed ways;
    League after league across the land
    The ceaseless herds obey Thy hand.

  Thou, whose high archways shine most clear
    Above the plenteous western plain,
  Thine ancient tribes from round the sphere
    To breathe its quickening air are fain;
          And smiles the sun
          To see made one
    Their brood throughout Earth's greenest space,
    Land of the new and lordlier race!


[The foregoing was the official hymn of the Louisiana Purchase Exposition at St. Louis in 1904. It was written upon invitation of the Exposition authorities, and was sung at the opening of the Fair by a chorus of five hundred voices, to music written for it, also upon official invitation, by Professor John K. Paine, of Harvard University. It fitly concludes the poems of Peace, in this volume of "National Spirit."]

End of Project Gutenberg's The World's Best Poetry, Volume 8, by Bliss Carman