Forward

What though Freedom’s hosts are parted,
Yet, beneath one banner fighting,
Strong in love and hero‐hearted,
All, their Country’s wrongs are righting
With the weapon that each deemeth best to strike oppression down.

And one battle‐cry resoundeth
From your ranks, success presaging;
And one heart within you boundeth
With a martyr’s faith, engaging
Each to bind upon his forehead cypress wreath or laurel crown.

For a power without you urges
That can brook no more delaying,
And the heaving myriad surges,
To and fro in tumult swaying,
Threaten death to all who vainly would oppose them in their might.

Thrilling words, that burn like fire,
Ye have preached to hut and hovel,
Till they leap up in their ire
From the death‐dust where they grovel,
These men of many sufferings, to die or win their right.

Pass the word that bands together
Word of mystic conjuration
And, as fire consumes the heather,
So the young hearts of the nation
Fierce will blaze up, quick and scathing, ’gainst the stranger and the foe.

Hand to hand with them confronted,
Looking death and danger gravely
In the face, with brow undaunted;
Doing nobly, dying bravely,
Stern as men resolved to conquer or to perish in their woe.

For the God‐breath speaketh in you,
Dare ye not belie your mission;
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And the beck’ning angels win you
On with many a radiant vision,
Up the thorny path of glory, where the hero gains his crown.

Fling abroad our Country’s banner,
Foremost march to Freedom leading,
Let the breath of millions fan her,
Not alone the wine‐press treading,
For a Nation is arising from her long and ghastly swoon.

Go with lips that dare not falter,
Offer up, with exaltations,
On your country’s holy altar,
Youth, with all its fervid passions,
And your life, if she demands it—Can a patriot fear to die?

What is life that ye should love it
More than manlike deeds of duty?
There’s a glory far above it
Crowns your brow with nobler beauty—
’Tis to die, with cheers heroic, lifting Freedom’s standard high.

Through the darkness and the dunlight,
Of this sorrow‐night of weeping,
Ye shall trail the radiant sunlight,
And, like strong men armed, leaping
Forth to wondrous deeds of glory, make Humanity sublime.

Rising higher still, and higher,
Till the Angel who stands nighest
To the Throne shall tune his lyre
To your praise before the Highest,
And the Crown of Fame Immortal shall be yours throughout all time.

by Lady Jane Wilde

Comments (27)

Wonderful poem of wordsworth
I find this song very close to ami protidhoni suni by bhupen hazarika
solitary reaper is one of the poems by William Wordsworth which makes me remember of nature so I like this poem.
solitary reaper is one of the best poems in my best poems column. It always makes me remember of nature how it is beautiful.
A most beautiful melancholy poem.
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