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The rout runs mad and fast;
From hand to hand, from gate to gate,
The flaming brand is passed.
The lurid glow falls strong across
Dark faces broad with smiles;
Not theirs the terror, hate, and loss,
That fire yon blazing piles.
With oar-strokes timing to their song,
They weave in simple lays
The pathos of remembered wrong,
The hope of better days--
The triumph-note that Miriam sung,
The joy of uncaged birds;
Softening with Afric's mellow tongue
Their broken Saxon words.
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