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Can you let the life he fought for--
A great nation's — be so brief?
The Old Thirteen!
Never let that sight be seen.
Georgia! whose chivalric soldiers
Proved the worth of gentle blood,
When the enemy struck so boldly,
And o'erswept you like a flood,
Will you turn your steel against those
Who, when in your direst need,
Came to strengthen those proud spirits?
Georgians, dare you say, “Secede” ?
That Old Thirteen--
Brothers both in word and deed!
Thy records, Carolina, point where
The first blood for Freedom fell;
By the mother who thus bore you,
Will you bid us all farewell?
Wild and wilful, proud, impatient,
Haughty sister, have you known
Through your turbulent life we loved you
For a beauty of your own,--
Loved you truly,
And could never have you gone?
By the memories of the Keystone,--
By the Jerseys' blood-stained snow,--
By old Empire's glorious battles,--
By the record of our foes,--
By Schuyler, Knox, old Putnam, Greene,--
By Marion's men, and Harry Lee,
Let us forget all party strife,
And only know that we are free.
The world has seen
What we have been.
Oh! still preserve the Old Thirteen.
With what blindness are we smitten,
Brother thus opposing brother!
In the nation's past 'tis written,
Freedom is our glorious mother.
You can count her pangs of travail
In the banner waving o'er us;
History tells the wreck and carnage
That o'erspread her when she bore us.
Shall love languish
When her anguish,
Beacon-like, still floats before us?
Palsied be the lips that frame it,--
Helpless fall that foeman's arm,--
Turn his fiercest strength to weakness,
Who would do a brother harm.
And, O God! wilt Thou take vengeance
On whoe'er, by word or deed,
Broadcast o'er our noble country
Sowed disunion's fruitful seed?
Curse the tongue
Of old or young,
Who shouts the battle-cry, “Secede” !
God, our Lord, be Thou our support,
Thou our stay in this dark hour;
Guide us through these angry mazes,
By Thine overseeing power;
Blast the rage of party sections;
Cause such war and strife to cease;
Give us — greatest gift to nations--
Give us union, love, and peace.
The Old Thirteen
On Thee shall lean;
Lord, let their mutual love increase.
Cast to the breeze that banner still,
With not one single star erased,
With not one single stripe effaced;
Shout, with a hearty, brave good-will,
“Let nought our happy land dissever,--
The Union, one, and one forever!”
Wake the wide echoes with that paean,--
The Union, and the Old Thirteen.
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