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Poem by Gerald Massey

Our Symbol

FLING out the red Banner! in mountain and valley
    Let Earth feel the tread of the free once again;
Now soldiers of Freedom, for love of God! rally,
    Old earth yearns to know that her children are men.
We are nerv'd by a million wrongs, burning, and
    Bold thoughts leap to birth,but the bold deeds
        must come.
And whenever Humanity's yearning and pleading,
    One battle for liberty, strike we heart-home!

Fling out the red Banner! its fiery front under
    Come gather ye, gather ye, champions of Right!
And roll round the world with the voice of God's
    The wrongs we've to reckonoppressors to smite!
They deem that we strike no more, like the old Hero-
    Martyrdom's own, battle hearted and brave,
Blood of Christ! Brothers mine, it were sweet but to
        see ye stand
    Triumph or Tomb welcome !   Glory or Grave!

Fling out the red Banner! achievements immortal
    Have yet to be won by the hands labour-brown,
And few, few may enter, the proud promise-portal,
    Yet wear it in thought, boys, the glorious Crown!
Oh, joy of the conflict! storm trumpet! array us;
    True hearts would leap up, were all hell in our path.
Up, up from the slave land; who stirreth to stay us
    Shall fall, as of old, in the red sea of wrath.

Fling out the red Banner !   Oh, sons of the morning,
    Young spirits abiding to burst into wings,
We stand shadow-crown'd; and sublime is the warning,
    All Heaven's grimly husht, and the bird of storm
"All's well," saith the sentry on tyranny's tower,
    "Even hope by their watch-fire is grey and tear-blind,"
Aye, all's well, Freedom's altar burns hour by hour,
    Live brands, for the fire-damp, with which ye are

Fling out the red Banner! the patriots perish.
    But where their bones whiten, the seed striketh root:
Their heart's-life ran red, the great harvest to cherish.
    Then gather ye, reapers, and garner the fruit.
Victory! victory!   Tyrants are quaking!
    The Titan of Toil from the bloody thrall starts;
The slaves are awakingthe dawnlight is breaking
    The footfall of Freedom, beats quick at our hearts!

Gerald Massey

Gerald Massey's other poems:
  1. A Maiden's Song
  2. Love in Idleness
  3. A Night-Musing
  4. Long Expected
  5. The Bridal

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