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Poem by Gerald Massey
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 bleeding; 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 thunder; The wrongs we've to reckon—oppressors to smite! They deem that we strike no more, like the old Hero- band, 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 sings! "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 mined. 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 awaking—the dawnlight is breaking— The footfall of Freedom, beats quick at our hearts!
Gerald Massey's other poems:
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