50. the golden wedge of Achan.
（Joshua VII.)When Joshua, warrior of the Lord,
O'er Canaan held his powerful sway,
Lo! once the mighty victor's sword
Arrested in its conquering way.
Humbled, in ruinous defeat,
The men of Israel fled apace;
Chased by the foe, in full retreat,
They own the visible disgrace.
And Joshua rent his clothes, and said
Alas! O Lord, and must it be
To perish thus without thine aid,
And fall by thy great enemy?
The Lord replied: ‘Tis sin, ‘tis sin!
There is, O Israel, in thy midst,
A secret and accursed thing
That on thee all thy troubles bring'st.
They searched around, confessed, and owned,
And lo! from Achan's guilty tent,
'Mong other spoils, a wedge of gold,
Of vast and ominous portent!
The curse of God was on the gold--
'Twas stolen, coveted, retained,
Against command to touch or hold,
Lest Israel's camp should be profaned.
Thus saith the Lord: Ye cannot stand
Before your enemies in fight,
Until, by my divine command,
This thing is out of mind and sight.
'Twas done, and lo! what honors came
To Joshua's triumphant arms!
New vict'ries clustered to his fame,
And whelmed the foe with new alarms.
Threescore and one of hostile kings,
Cities and armies strong and great,
In quick succession now he brings
To death — to all-devouring fate.
Triumphant Justice, pure and grand,
Ho, all ye nations of the earth,
And thou, America, blest land,
Struggling to Freedom's second birth--
Learn of the God of Israel's might,
Success in war does not depend
On numbers rushing to the fight,
Though just the cause we may defend.
Make it all just. Shun to pollute
The sacred fire of the soul,
Or Freedom's holy name imbrute
With slavery's tyrannous control.
Throw out that cursed wedge of gold!
Remnant of old barbaric spoil,
Nor seek one hour a slave to hold
On Freedom's consecrated soil.
Strike at the foeman's bloody heart!
In thought, at least, deal every blow,
With deadly, stern, heroic art,
At slavery's self — the only foe.
Warm up thy courage at the fire
Of crushed humanity's sad course,
Nor let one lurking, foul desire
Of avarice taint these holy wars.
Then shall the armies of the skies--
Ten thousand thousand legions strong,
Of angels bright, with glad surprise,
Draw near to join thy conquering throng.
Then shall thy sword no more be stayed,
Thine armies then retreat no more;
Lo! Israel's God shall be thine aid,
And give thee victory, as of yore.
Boston, Mass., Nov. 20.