by William Cullen Bryant (1794 - 1878)

Oh, slow to smite and swift to spare
Language: English 
Oh, slow to smite and swift to spare,
Gentle and merciful and just!
Who, in the fear of God, didst bear
The sword of power, a nation's trust!

In sorrow by thy bier we stand,
Amid the awe that hushes all,
And speak the anguish of a land
That shook with horror at thy fall.

Thy task is done; the bond are free:
We bear thee to an honored grave,
Whose proudest monument shall be
The broken fetters of the slave.

Pure was thy life; its bloody close
Hath placed thee with the sons of light,
Among the noble host of those
Who perished in the cause of Right.

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Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

This text was added to the website: 2005-03-15
Line count: 16
Word count: 109