Let us drink, together, fellows, as we did in days of yore,
And still enjoy the golden hours that Fortune has in store,
The absent friends remembered be, in all that's sung or said,
And Love immortal consecrate the memory of the dead.
Fill every goblet to the brim?—let every heart be filled
With kindly recollections, and all bitter ones be stilled!
Come round me, dear old fellows, and in chorus as we sing,
Life's Autumn days shall be as glad as were its days of Spring.
Drink, Brothers, to the absent who are living, first of all,
While each familiar name and face we lovingly recall!
The generous and brave and good! The kind, and frank, and true,
Who knew not how false word to speak or what was base to do.
We see the faces of the Dead; they hover in the air,
And looking on us lovingly, our mirth they seem to share;
O dearly loved! though ye have gone to other stars or spheres,
We still have for you thoughts of love and consecrated tears.
Pour a libation rich with love upon the graves that hold
The ashes of the gallant hearts that long ago grew cold;
And swear that never party feuds or civil war shall break
Our bonds of love, and enemies of friends and comrades make.
The Dead are with us always, friends! let us their teachings heed!
'Forgive thy brother, if he err!' they eloquently plead:
'Let bygones be bygones!' they cry; 'let the old love revive!
'And on the altars of your hearts keep Friendship's fire alive.'
It is better far to love than hate, for Nations as for men;
Let us hope the good old humour soon will bless the land again:
But if the politicians still should wrangle, scold, and fight,
Their quarrels shall not break the ties that we re-knit tonight.
Our Autumn days of life have come, the frosts begin to fall,
Beyond the dark, deep river, hark! we hear old comrades call.
To the Dead and Living whom each loves, let each his goblet fill;
And the memory of the dead shall make the living dearer still.
Albert Pike's Other Poems
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