True Freedom

Wait not till the slaves pronounce the word
To set the captive free, —
Be free yourselves, be not deferred,
And farewell, Slavery.

Ye all are slaves, ye have your price,
And gang but cries to gang;
Then rise! the highest of ye rise! —
I hear your fetters clang.

The warmest heart the North doth breed
Is still too cold and far;
The colored man's release must come
From outcast Africa

What is your whole Republic worth?
Ye hold out vulgar lures;
Why will you be disparting Earth
When all Heaven is yours?

He's governed well who rules himself, —
No despot vetoes him:
There's no defaulter steals his pelf,
Nor Revolution grim.

'Tis easier to treat with kings
And please our country's foes,
Than treat with Conscience of the things
That only Conscience knows.
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