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BATTLE HYMN OF THE REPUBLIC
JULIA WARD HOWE
Battle Hymn of the Republic Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the
Lord : He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of
wrath are stored; 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;
5 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 My grace with
you 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 judg
ment-seat : Oh! be swift, my soul, to answer Him! be jubilant,
Our God is marching on.
In the beauty of the lilies Christ was born across the
With a glory in His bosom that transfigures you and
As He died to make men holy, let us die to make men free,
While God is marching on.
Behind him lay the gray Azores,
Behind him the gates of Hercules;
Before him only shoreless seas.
For lo! the very stars are gone.
Brave Admiral, speak; what shall I say?"
“Why say: ‘Sail on! sail on! and on!'”
“My men grow mutinous day by day;
My men grow ghastly wan and weak,” The stout mate thought of home; a spray
Of salt wave washed his swarthy cheek. “What shall I say, brave Admiral, say,
If we sight naught but seas at dawn ?” “Why, you shall say, at break of day,
"Sail on! sail on! sail on! and on!'”
They sailed and sailed as winds might blow,
Until at last the blanched mate said: "Why, now not even God would know
Should I and all my men fall dead.
For God from these dread seas is gone.
He said: “Sail on! sail on! and on!”
They sailed. They sailed. Then spake the mate:
“This mad sea shows his teeth to-night. He curls his lip, he lies in wait,
With lifted teeth, as if to bite !
What shall we do when hope is gone ?”
"Sail on! sail on! sail on! and on!”
Then, pale and worn, he kept his deck,
And peered through darkness. Ah, that night Of all dark nights! And then a speck
A light! a light ! a light ! a light ! 5 It grew, a starlit flag unfurled !
It grew to be Time's burst of dawn. He gained a world; he gave that world
Its greatest lesson: “On! sail on!”
JAMES WHITCOMB RILEY
Old Glory! say, who, 10 By the ships and the crew,
And the long, blended ranks of the gray and the blueWho gave you, Old Glory, the name that you bear With such pride everywhere,
As you cast yourself free to the rapturous air 13 And leap out full length, as we're wanting you to?
Who gave you that name, with the ring of the same,
1 This and the following poems are used by the courteous permission of the publishers, Messrs. Bobbs, Merrill, & Co., Indianapolis.
With your stars at their glittering best overhead
blue ! Who
gave you the name of Old Glory Who gave you the name of Old Glory?
The old banner lifted and faltering then
Are we thrilled at the name of Old Glory?
Then the old banner leaped like a sail in the blast,