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  Maceo  

 

Maceo dead! a thrill of sorrow
     Through our hearts in sadness ran
When we felt in one sad hour
     That the world had lost a man.

He had clasped unto his bosom
The sad fortunes of his land--
Held the cause for which he perished
     With a firm, unfaltering hand.

On his lips the name of freedom
     Fainted with his latest breath.
Cuba Libre was his watchword
     Passing through the gates of death.

With the light of God around us,
     Why this agony and strife?
With the cross of Christ before us,
     Why this fearful waste of life?

Must the pathway unto freedom
     Ever mark a crimson line,
And the eyes of wayward mortals
     Always close to light divine?

Must the hearts of fearless valor
     Fail 'mid crime and cruel wrong,
When the world has read of heroes
     Brave and earnest, true and strong?

Men to stay the floods of sorrow
     Sweeping round each war-crushed heart;
Men to say to strife and carnage--
     From our world henceforth depart.

God of peace and God of nations,
     Haste! oh, haste the glorious day
When the reign of our Redeemer
     O'er the world shall have its sway.

When the swords now blood encrusted,
     Spears that reap the battle field,
Shall be changed to higher service,
     Helping earth rich harvests yield.

Where the widow weeps in anguish,
     And the orphan bows his head,
Grant that peace and joy and gladness
     May like holy angels tread.

Pity, oh, our God the sorrow
     Of thy world from thee astray,
Lead us from the paths of madness
     Unto Christ the living way.

Year by year the world grows weary
     'Neath its weight of sin and strife,
Though the hands once pierced and bleeding
     Offer more abundant life.

May the choral song of angels
     Heard upon Judea's plain
Sound throughout the earth the tidings
     Of that old and sweet refrain.

Till our world, so sad and weary,
     Finds the balmy rest of peace--
Peace to silence all her discords--
     Peace till war and crime shall cease.

Peace to fall like gentle showers,
     Or on parched flowers dew,
Till our hearts proclaim with gladness:
     Lo, He maketh all things new.

       - Frances E. W. Harper


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