76. Maj.-Gen. Price's proclamation.
by Clericus.Missourians, a word or two!
The undersigned, last June,
Was called to head the Spartan few
Who sword from scabbard sternly drew,
To drive away the craven crew,
Bound by black vows to snatch from you
Your freedom's priceless boon!
The Governor distinctly asked
For Fifty Thousand Men;
You heard him ask — you must have heard
I know your patriot pulses stirred,
Your patriot impulses concurred
In fierce resolves to hound the herd
Back to their Northern den!
Your hearts were right-your purpose set
To rise up there and then;
You felt the flame of holy hate,
You longed in blood your swords to sate,
Your eagerness for fight was great,
You found it difficult to wait--
You Fifty Thousand Men!
But, notwithstanding this desire
The enemy to drive--
This strong war-fever for the fray,
This burning for the battle-day,
Most all the fifty stayed away;
The actual figure, strange to say,
Was only about five.
Out of two hundred thousand males,
A match for any foes--
Strong arms, brave hearts, and flashing eyes,
Hands raised defiant to the skies,
Spirit that conquers or that dies,--
Out of the host that burned to rise,
But five in fifty rose!
 Nearly six months, you are aware,
Have come and gone since then;
You've farmed the field and mowed the hay,
Your winter stock is stowed away,
You're ready 'gainst the rainy day;
Are you not coming now, I say,
Ye Fifty Thousand Men?
The foe has not as yet retired,--
Tis singular, but true!
So far from that, I'm forced to say,
From what I see, he means to stay,
Most probably till swept away;
In view of which, ye heroes, pray,
What do you mean to do?
Suppose the facts were otherwise,
My Fifty Thousand Men!
That, starting when the summons rose,
You'd leaped to feet to face the foes,--
Dealt Fifty Thousand deathly blows--
It's not the case — but just suppose--
How would the thing be then?
Suppose, for every man we've got,
We had as much as ten;
Suppose we'd made th' invader flee,
And struck the tyrant to the knee;
That I'd chased him, and not he me,
It's clear as daylight — don't you see?--
Ye Fifty Thousand Men!
To come to facts again,
Where is the old Missouri fire,
Courage passed down to son from sire,
Motto, “Still onward, upward higher” ?
Died out? If not, where, I inquire,
The Fifty Thousand Men?
Look at us! we — we've done the work
Of Fifty Thousand Men!
We formed, and fought, and bled — we few--
No bed, no coverlid, no shoe--
Waded through mud and mire for you;
Will you not come and do it too?
And, if so, mention when.
Numbers give strength--five's more than one!
And still it's less than ten!
Numbers, increased, do greater grow!
Numbers intimidate the foe!
Numbers lay lesser numbers low!
Missourians, I'll prove it so,
With Fifty Thousand Men!
The fact is, fellow-citizens,
--No “if,” nor “why,” nor “when,” --
I will have help — I cannot wait!
Somebody's got to save the State,
And do it quick, before too late!
You must turn out, at any rate,
You Fifty Thousand Men!
Turn out! turn out, then! now's the time--
The crisis of our fate!
Mechanics, stop your wheels and saws!
Lawyers, lay down the book of laws!
Ye aspirants for office, pause!
Ye teamsters, hush your “Gee, whoa, haws,”
And rush to save the State.
Come on! come on, brave spirits all!
No others need apply;
Over the arm the musket fling;
Wear all your clothes, your bedding bring,
Your extra sheets, and every thing.
Come on! and let the war-cry ring, “To conquer or to die!”
Let but your struggles free the land,
The State your pay will fix;
Meantime, don't think about the pay;
Take higher ground — look far away;
Glory's the thing for which I pray--
That, or a place wherein I may
Bury my six-foot-six.
I'm sure you mean to come, you know-
Oh, perfectly — but, then,
As yet I find no flashing eyes;
I hear no shouts that shake the skies.
If it's a fact you mean to rise,
Why don't you, now — why don't you rise,
You Fifty Thousand Men?
Hark! up along the mountain-side!
Hark! down the distant glen!
What sound is this that surges past?
A war-whoop?-footsteps gathering fast?
The echoes of the bugle blast?
Perhaps — it may be that — at last.
Ho! Fifty Thousand Men!