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America, the greatest poem,
where once the gallant revolutionary,
his blue cotton coat and golden buttons,
rode valiantly on horseback
under the glorious crimson, snowy white, and evening sky blue,
oaken musket at his side,
to charge in a commanding Calvary
and thrust a shining silver bayonet
into the scarlet gut of oppression.
Where, by the effects of these men,
refugees ventured to find shelter;
to be cradled in the warm arms
of our dignified, benevolent mother,
her satin robe and fervent torch
from the rolling green hills of Ireland—
from the lonesome dust roads of China—
from the jagged olive decked summits of Europe—
each coming for a prize; a hammer,
a sewing needle, a saw, a mixing spoon
to pour out a heart, thus far unsung.
Oh, brother Whitman,
The uncut hairs of your grave
grow in hopeful green across America.
Turn the eyes of your soul to the Great Poem.
That silver glimmering bayonet, how rusty it now is;
the torch in Mother Liberty’s hand, what a dim beacon;
the golden road of opportunity rides us—
the carpenter’s hammer crucifies him—
the mason’s chisel chips away at him—
the shoemaker’s shoes are wearing him—
the boat maker’s ship is sinking him.
Unite with me, brother Whitman!
that America’s song can rise again,
ringing out in the melodious joy of freedom.