DAYBREAK upon the hills!
Slowly, behind the midnight murk and trail
Of the long storm, light brightens, pure and pale,
And the horizon fills.
Not bearing swift release,—
Not with quick feet of triumph, but with tread
August and solemn, following her dead,
Cometh, at last, our Peace.
Over thick graves grown green,
Over pale bones that graveless lie and bleach,
Over torn human hearts her path doth reach,
And Heaven’s dear pity lean.
O angel sweet and grand !
White-footed, from beside the throne of God,
Thou movest, with the palm and olive-rod,
And day bespreads the land !
His Day we waited for!
With faces to the East, we prayed and fought;
And a faint music of the dawning caught,
All through the sounds of War.
Our souls are still with praise !
It is the dawning; there is work to do:
When we have borne the long hours’ burden through,
Then we will pæans raise.
God give us, with the time,
His strength for His large purpose to the world !
To bear before Him, in its face unfurled,
His gonfalon sublime !
Ay, we are strong ! Both sides
The misty river stretch His army’s wings :
Heavenward, with glorious wheel, one flank He flings ;
And one front still abides !
Strongest where most bereft!
His great ones He doth call to more command.
For whom He hath prepared it, they shall stand
On the Right Hand and Left!