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[294] from which it came, and then all the cotton fields of the South, from gray Atlantic dawns to the evening star; and not only cotton fields, but the rivers and mountains and forests of this land, which blesses the world with its mighty commerce, joining ‘with a delicate web remotest strands.’ In offices of peace and love his country's mission lies; but now the enemy is coming-war is inevitable. In words of passionate indignation and patriotism he exclaims:

Oh, help us, Lord! to roll the crimson flood
Back on its course, and, while our banners wing
Northward, strike with us! till the Goth shall cling
To his own blasted altar—stones, and crave
Mercy; and we shall grant it, and dictate
The lenient future of his fate
There, where some rotting ships and crumbling quays
Shall one day mark the Port which ruled the Western seas.

The closing lines—partly ridiculous and partly pathetic in the light of today—are typical of the absolute confidence of the South.

When the Confederate Congress met in Montgomery in February, 1861, Timrod hailed the birth of the new nation in his stateliest ode, Ethnogenesis. All nature's blessings are with the South and take part with her against the North, mad and blinded in its rage. The strength of pine and palm, the firmness and calm of the hills, the snow of Southern summers (cotton), the abundance of the harvests, the heart of woman, the chivalry of men are arrayed against materialism and fanaticism. To doubt the end were want of trust in God. The poem closes with a passage that still remains the most felicitous expression of the Southern temperament. Although the poet's vision of a separate nation was an illusion, there will never be a time when these words should not be quoted in any characterization of the natural warmth and cordiality of the Southern people:

The hour perchance is not yet wholly ripe
When all shall own it, but the type
Whereby we shall be known in every land
Is that vast gulf which lips our Southern strand,

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