John Pierpont

(1785-1866 / the United States)

Hymns And Odes Viii - Poem by John Pierpont

Break forth in song, ye trees,
As, through your tops, the breeze
Sweeps from the sea!
For, on its rushing wings,
To your cool shades and springs,
That breeze a people brings,
Exiled though free.

Ye sister hills, lay down
Of ancient oaks your crown,
In homage due;-
These are the great of earth,
Great, not by kingly birth,
Great in their well proved worth,
Firm hearts and true.

These are the living lights,
That from your bold, green heights,
Shall shine afar,
Till they who name the name
Of Freedom, toward the flame
Come, as the Magi came
Toward Bethlehem's star.

Gone are those great and good,
Who here, in peril, stood
And raised their hymn.
Peace to the reverend dead!
The light, that on their head
Two hundred years have shed,
Shall ne'er grow dim.

Ye temples, that to God
Rise where our fathers trod,
Guard well your trust,-
The faith, that dared the sea,
The truth, that made them free,
Their cherished purity,
Their garnered dust.

Thou high and holy One,
Whose care for sire and son
All nature fills,
While day shall break and close,
While night her crescent shows,
O, let thy light repose
On these our hills.

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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, September 15, 2010

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