Compromise

Compromise ! Who dares to speak it
On the nation's hallowed Day,
When the air with thunder echoes
And the rocket-lightnings play?
Compromise? while on the dial
Liberty goes ages back,
Scourged and bound, for our denial,
Firmer to the despot's rack?

Compromise? while angels tremble
As we falter in the race;
Cringe and flatter and dissemble,—
We! who hold such royal place?
Compromise! It suits the craven!
Has our valor stooped so low?
Have we lost our ancient ardor
Face to face to meet the foe?

No! By all the May-Flower's peril
On the wild and wintry sea;
By the Pilgrim's prayer ascending,
As he knelt with reverent knee;
By that fairest day of summer
When the true, the tried, the brave,
Name and life and sacred honor
To the Roll of Freedom gave;

By the tears, the march, the battle,
Where the noble, fearless died,—
Round them roar of hostile cannon,
Waiting angels at their side;
By our children's golden future,
By our fathers' stainless shield,
That which God and heroes left us,
We will never, never yield!

Hear it, ye who sit in council!
We, the People, tell you so!
Will you venture “Yes” to whisper
When the millions thunder “No”?
Will you sell the nation's birthright,
Heritage of toil and pain,
While a cry of shame and vengeance
Rings from Oregon to Maine?

Compromise? We scorn the offer!
Separation we-defy!
“Firm and free and one forever!”
Thus the People make reply.
“Death to every form of Treason,
In the Senate, on the field,”—
While the chorus swells triumphant,
“We will never, never yield!”
Rate this poem: 

Reviews

No reviews yet.