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SALUTATORY

Our honor 'tis who stay behind—
Soldiers of France's glory—
To hail with strengthening words and kind
The men that march the foe to find,
And rout him from our hallowed soil
That groans with pain of his despoil—
His menace gory.


Our honor 'tis to hold you dear,
War-men of skill and soul;
The old, the young, alike revere—
Men faring forth who smile at fear,
While earth itself returns with dread
The echo of their martial tread
Toward triumph's goal.


Our honor 'tis to nurse you well—
Soldiers of newer glory—
To bind your wounds and soothe your brow,
Who little dreamed to add as now
By faith and nerve the valorous meed
Of high, unselfish, mighty deed
To France's story.


Our honor 'tis to give our tears—
Soldiers that lie at rest!
Smiles we give, too, and cheering glance
With farewell kiss, while saddened France
To men asleep in reddened fields
The peace unending gently yields
Of Heaven's blest.