Ignoble hate, defeating its own ends!
The act that meant dishonor, working glory!
Could any mausoleum built by hands
Lift his sweet memory nearer to the heavens,
Or give it such a precious consecration
In every heart which love has purified?
O young and sainted martyr! let them pile
Whole hecatombs of dead upon thy ashes;
They can not bar God's angels from receiving
Thy radiant spirit with divinest welcomes;
They can not cover from celestial eyes
The sacrifice that bears thee close to Christ!
Did I not see thee, on that day in spring,
Leading one sable thousand through our streets;
Braving the scorn and (what was worse) the pity
Of many backward hearts, yet cheered with bravos
From those who scanned the great significance
Of thy devoted daring---saw the crown
Behind the cross, behind the shame the glory;
Behind the imminent death the life immortal?
Weep not, heroic parents! be consoled!
Think of thy loved one's gain, lamenting wife!
And let a holy pride o'ermaster grief!
All that could perish of him, let it lie
There, where the smoke from Sumter's bellowing guns
Curls o'er the grave, which no commingled dust
Can make less sacred! Soon his monument
Shall be the old flag waving, and proclaiming
To the whole world that the great cause he died for
Has nobly triumphed; that the hideous power,
Hell-born, that would disgrace him, has been hurled
Into the pit it hollowed for the nation;
That the Republic stands redeemed and pure,
Justice enthroned, and not one child of God
Robbed of his birthright---Freedom!