163. all of them.1
by S. R. K.With head erect, and lips compressed,
He throws his hammer by;
The purpose of his manly breast
Is now to do or die.
He seeks the camp: “Put down my name,
(My boys will mind the shop;)
If the traitors want my heart's best blood,
I'll sell it drop for drop.
“And here comes now my oldest boy:
My son, what would you do?”
“Father, my brother will drive the trade;
I've come to fight with you.”
“God bless him! Well, put down his name;
I cannot send him home.
But here's the other boy, I see:
My son, what made you come?”
“Father, I could not work alone;
The shop may go to — grass;
I've come to fight for the good old flag;
Stand off here — let me pass.”
“Yes, put him down — he's a noble boy;
I've two that are younger still;
They'll drive the plough on the Flushing farm,
And work with a right good will.
“My God! and here comes one of them!
My son, you must not go!”
“Father, when traitors are marching on,
I cannot plough or sow.”
“Well, thank God, there is one left yet;
He will plough and sow what he can;
But he's only a boy, and can never do
The work of a full-grown man.”
With a proud, full heart, the blacksmith turned,
And walked to the other side,
For he felt a weakness he almost scorned,
And a tear he fain would bide.
They told him then, his youngest boy
Was putting his name on the roll:
“It must not be,” said the brave old man;
“No, no, he's the light of my soul!”
But the lad came up with a beaming face,
Which bore neither fears nor cares:
“Father, say nothing — my name is down;
I have let out the farm on shares.”
And now they've marched to the tented field,
And when the wild battle shall come,
They'll strike a full blow for the Stars and Stripes,
For God, and their Country, and Home.