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140. the voices of the hour.

by S. P. D.
Hark I the rally-call of Freedom I Hark! the people's answer given,
As their thunder-toned responses echo up the vaulted heaven;
We will rally, we will gather, we will muster in our might,
For our banner must be stainless, and our God will shield the right!
Ay, though bloody may be the conquest to which we march along,
And though groans may make a dissonance in our grand victor-song,
We will rally, we will gather, we will muster in our might,
And our banner shall be stainless, for our God will shield the right!

Every hour hath prophet's utterance, and each gale from o'er the seas
Brings the crash of falling empires, and of tottering dynasties;
From Italia's classic ruins, to the ice-realm of the Czar,
Sounds the tramp of marshalled cohorts, as they muster to the war;
And from despots' shattered altars Freedom's incensecloud is curled,
While the people's unchained voices send their Vivas round the world.

Then, freemen, shall we falter, as our battle surges on?
Shall we tamely yield the birthright by our fathers' valor won?
Give up this glorious heritage to Treason's foul misrule,
And serve, as willing pupils, in the anarch's villain-school?
Shall we sit in dumb despairing, or but whispered prayers repeat,
While our banner's starry splendors shall be draggled at our feet?
Shall we hug pale phantoms longer, all forgot each patriot vow,
And thus prove ourselves unequal to the stern demands of now?

Do we hear no warning voices from the Temple of the Past,
To whose priesthood earth's best heroes throng, and through whose arches vast
They thunder still, the sturdy chords of Freedom's natal hymn,
As they sang, by hope inspired, in the twilight cold and dim?
Do no spectres stalk before us, from their heaps of hallowed dust,
And, with finger heavenward pointing, bid us not betray our trust?
Do the winds no tidings bring us from the waves of Congaree,
As they kiss the grass-fringed battle-fields, and hurry to the sea?
Or from Bunker's storied hilltop, whence the gray stones seek the sky,
To mark the spot as holy where our fathers dared to die?

What though our sky is shrouded with the midnight robe of shame,
And the light but faintly flickers from our Freedom's altar-flame;
Darkest night precedes the dawning, and new light shall yet break through,
And a new day grandly open, bathed with heaven's unquestioned blue;
And though stars are fleeing wildly from Night's cloudy tournament,
The Morning's bow of promise we shall see above us bent;
Of promise as it glimmers from the labor-burthened hours,
When snow, to bare and bleeding feet, was warm as summer's flowers;
When days of struggle, and of toil, and nights of dark unrest,
Made the purchase of the bounties, by us, ingrates, now possessed.

Then up, and rally proudly to the foremost of the fray,
And let every patriot be a host, to stand and strike to-day;
While the rally-call of Freedom, and the people's answer given,
Still, in thunder-toned responses, echo up the vaulted heaven,--
We will rally, we will gather, we will muster in our might,
And bear on our stainless banner, for our God shall shield the right!

--Boston Transcript, June 8.

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