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COPYRIGHT DEPOSIT.



By LYMAN WHITNEY ALLEN



A PARABLE OF THE ROSE

And Other Poems

ABRAHAM LINCOLN : A Poem

Centennial (Fourth) Edition



NOTE
To this poem was awarded the prize of one thousand
dollars offered by the New York Herald in 1S95 for the best
poem on American history. It was published in the Christmas
issues of the New York Herald \ the Boston Herald, and the
St. Louis Republic of that year. This fourth or Centennial
edition is a revision and enlargement.



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Abraham Lincoln

A Poem



By
Lyman Whitney Allen



Centennial (Fourth) Edition



G. P. Putnam's Sons

New York and London

Gbefmfcfterbocker iptess

1909



IY of CONGRESS

Two Copies Kcceived

_ Copyrmnt Entry
CLASS Oc XAC NO



E>



C*T(^t *~



Copyright, 1895

BY

JAMES GORDON BENNETT

Copyright, 1896

BY

G. P. PUTNAM'S SONS
Entered at Stationers' Hall, London

Copyright, 1909

BY

LYMAN WHITNEY ALLEN
(For Fourth Edition)



Ube "ftnicfeerbocfcer Press, Hew Jfforft



TO MYRA.

Small worth in Heaven where thou dost live
Has praise of earth : yet unto thee
My soul would phrase the memory

Of every grace which thou didst give, —

The comrade love, the patriot fire,

The daily sweet solicitude

Attending every poet mood,
Ascending with each high desire.

Full well thou know'st the regnant part
Thou hadst when first these numbers came;
Henceforth shall issue in thy name

This tribute of a grateful heart.

"Where quiring saints and seraphs meet,

Reach down from out the crowned throng ;
And, as of yore, be thine the song

I lay at Love's unvisioned feet.



VII



CONTENTS.






PAGE

Invocation 3


Historic Preludes






7


The Heart of Freedom .






9


Ships of Fate .






11


A Dream of Empire .






14


The Fall of the Dark






18


The Champion of Liberty






21


The Star of Sangamon






23


The People's King .






30


The Great Expectance






34


The Nation's Awakening






37


Fort Sumter






39


Columbia's Wrath .






44


Retribution






47



x CONTENTS




PAGE


The People's Uprising


.


51


The Call to Arms .


.


53


The People's Response




55


The Gathering of the ',


Legions


62


Our Volunteers


.


64


Humiliation


.


67


The Price of Liberty


.


69


Bull Run .




70


The Ends of Purpose


.


72


Fredericksburg


.


74


Further Darkness .


.


76


The Night of Sorrow


.


77


Emancipation .




79


The Vigil .




81


The Nation's Prophet


.


85


The Voice of Destiny


.


88


The Stroke of Justice


. .


90



CONTENTS.


XI




PACK


Victory


93


Dawn and Hope .


95


Gettysburg


97


The Lifting Shadows


99


The Great Translation


103


The Apotheosis .


105


The Voice of Martyrdom


HI


The Nation's Woe .


113


The Pledge of History .


117


Columbia, Great Mother


119


Our Soldiers ....


123


The Later Warriors


127


The Land of Promise


135



INVOCATION.



INVOCATION.

Of one great Ship that sailed the sea
And weathered the infuriate blast ;
Of one great Pilot that stood fast

And brought her into lee,



I sing ; and singing seek to use

Thy founts of grace, as they of yore
Sought and found service in thy store,

O immemorial Muse !

3



ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

The Grecian Poet, quaffing thence
Castalian cheer, song's classic lord,
Awoke the mythic centuried chord

Of life's diviner sense.



The Florentine,with screened eyes,
Caught rich and Beatrician gleam
Of Eunoe's redemptive stream,

And beams of Paradise.



The Seer of Horton, finding meet
Thy rills beyond the hills of time,
Set primal sorrow into rime,

And sin to music sweet.



INVOCATION.

The Laureate of the Holy Grail,

Deep-drinking, placed before thy face
The Idyll-Epic of the race,

The quest's supreme avail.



The Cambridge Singer o'er the walls
Of custom clomb, and roaming found,
On far Itascan storied ground,

The Laughing Water Falls ;



The twilight of primeval pines,
The leafy homes of plumed quires,
Mondamin's green and golden spires,

And Hiawatha's shrines.



ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

O ancient Muse forever young !

Guard of the poets' mystic spring !

Touch heart and tongue that I may sing
Somewhat as they have sung, —



One simple strain of that great song,
Which ardent bards, through future years,
O'er ever-brightening hemispheres,

Shall rapturously prolong ;



Sweet burthen since the world began,

Desire of every century,

Imperious Love's sublime decree, —
The brotherhood of man.



HISTORIC PRELUDES.



THE HEART OF FREEDOM.

The fragrant meadows of Runnymede

Grow greener with every succeeding year ;

The Ironside hoofs of the Puritan's steed
Still crowd on the Cavalier.



The laurel blooms upon Burial Hill ;

The broken tablets are slabs of gold ;

And Plymouth Rock in the winter's chill

With summer is aureoled.
9



10 ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

The thunders of Concord and Lexington
Roll on in music that will not die ;

And one brave venture for Freedom done
Immortally crowns July.



White stars of dawn in a sky of blue,
And bars of glory o'er land and sea,

Shall float the emblem all ages through
Of Union and Liberty.



So stands our hope with its blessings spread,

A magna charta inviolate ;
The deathless soul of the patriot dead ;

The heart of the living State.



SHIPS OF FATE.

Two paths apart on the misty main ;

Two eager prows toward the beaconing West ;
O'er crests of courage, through troughs of pain,

Of life and of death possessed.



Above the one from seraphic wings

Blew friendly winds 'gainst the crowded sails;

And fingers used to celestial strings
Held back on the rushing gales.



12 ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

Below the other a rising sweep

Of forms foam-raimented ; raven hands

Forced fiercely through the resentful deep
Swift woe unto western lands.



Fair Mayflower, breasting the wintry sea !

Thou wert the promise of wakening spring ;
Embosoming Freedom's destiny

And Liberty's issuing.



Dark Slaver, touching Virginia's shore !

With captives laden from mast to keel ;
Thou wert the sign of the deepening sore

Of wrong that could only heal



SHIPS OF FATE. 13

In smoke of battle and streams of blood,
In orphan cries unto winds and waves,

In tears of precipitate widowhood
Bedewing a million graves.



A DREAM OF EMPIRE.

A FRUITFUL land 'neath Southern skies,
With verdant fields and blossomed meads ,*

And o'er the seas increasing rise

The cries of Europe's greatening needs.



Wide-stretching belts of meltless snows

Through swarms of swarthy forms displayed

And purple wealth to golden grows

Along the thoroughfares of trade.
14



A DREAM OF EMPIRE. 1$

A dream of empire such as ne'er
Glowed on the vision of the race ;

A bounteous breadth of tropic sphere,
A luminous ocean-rounded space,



From Hatteras to Panama,
And summer shores of Mazatlan,

To copper hills of Arriba

Beyond the bays of Yucatan ;



And on o'er Amazonian plain,

Past Pampean sea and jewelled bourn,
Through Incan trails and tracks of Spain,

One empire to the Southern Horn.



l6 ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

An empire with its gilded throne

By flesh and blood enslaved wrought ;

An empire with its pillared zone

Of states, whose founders nobly fought



For right and faith, but failed to trace,
The while their life-blood stained the sod,

Within the negro's ebon face
The image of Almighty God.



And later scions, holding fast
Their legacies of sophistry,

Preferred the world's discordant past,
Forsook the footsteps of the free,



A DREAM OF EMPIRE.



17



To tread apart revulsive ways,

Back from the ascending trend of things,
Back toward the nations' yesterdays,

Hand unto hand again with kings.



THE FALL OF THE DARK.

THE dream waits e'er its clear accomplishment
As night-time waits the day and day's new
power ;

Likewise this ancient vision's full event
Must tarry upon Fate's imperious hour.



The dream and night were one; the sleepless
eyes,

The laborous hands, in places high and low,
Wrought lustily. What lips may speak the rise

Of vast preparings, of the underglow

18



THE FALL OF THE DARK. 19

Of thought forth-brought as by a miracle
To coffered gold, to swords and bayonets,

To mustering hosts and the enlarging spell
Of hatred rising into thunderous threats?



Wide-spreading Northern wonder, working grief,
Grew to engulfing terror. Augurings

Vulturian filled the air. Calm-browed Belief
Vanished before Distrust whose venom stings



All souls impierced, the while all thoughts grew
dark

And darkness fell upon the world. The land
Felt horror's pall, as if its covenant ark

Were falling into close Philistine hand.



20 ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

The crush of sorrow and the hush of fear

Sank in the ominous pause of dumb despite.

Then out of darkness and of horror sheer
One sudden vast alarum rilled the night.



THE CHAMPION OF LIBERTY.



21



THE STAR OF SANGAMON.

A NATION called through the gloom

In one long wail of despair,

One multitudinous prayer,

'Neath portent of hastening doom ;

And myriad strained eyes

Were lifted to lowering skies.

But on a sudden the night
Was shaken : a marvellous light
Burst forth, an effulgent spark
Against the o'erwhelming dark.
23



24 ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

It waxed, it whitened, it shone
Aflame in the widening zone
Of dawn ; and a world intent
Read, scanning the firmament,
God's covenant blazed thereon,
America's horoscope,
The sign of a Nation's hope,
The Star of Sangamon.



Not out of the East but the West
A Star and a Savior rose ;
A light to an eager quest,
A spirit of grace possessed,
Of faith 'mid increasing woes,
Of wisdom manifest.



THE STAR OF SANGAMON. 25

And, forth from the variant past
Of thraldom's darkness, at last
God's measureless love for man
Wrought through heredity's dower
The great American,
Whose soul was the perfect flower
Of patriot planting in soil
Kept moist by blood and tears,
And fertile by faithful toil
Throughout unnumbered years.



Nor accident nor chance,
But heavenly ordinance
Set his nativity
In ripened fulness of time,



26 ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

For sake of a race to be

The pledge of a golden prime.

In lowliest spot he breathed
His first sweet breath of the earth ;
And life's great Parent bequeathed
Fair virginal Nature from birth
To be his tutor and friend,
His youthful steps to attend.

She led o'er the wooded hills
And flowering prairied vales,
Along by the summer's rills,
Against the winter's gales,
Through sweeps of primeval ills,
Across the Red Men's trails.



THE STAR OF SANGAMON. 2J

She taught him the songs of birds,
The sympathy-syllabled words
Of water and earth and air,
And pointed the winding stair
That leads to Heaven, where climb
The higher forces of time.

She bound him, that he might feel
The weight of Oppression's heel ;
She starved him, that he might learn
The hunger of souls that yearn ;
She bruised him, that he might know
Somewhat of the world's great woe.

She helmed him with faith ; she placed
The girdle of strength at his waist ;



28 ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

And over his breast she laid
The buckler of right ; the blade
Of truth she set in his hand,
And bade him unwavering stand,
As Moses stood with his rod,
For Freedom and God.

At length in a deathless hour
She kissed him ; a quickening power
Shot forth through her lips of fire
In touch of divine desire.

One long sweet look of review ;
Then suddenly from her she threw
Her manifold mantle of mystery ;
And, facing the great Before,



THE STAR OF SANGAMON. 29

On unto the famed door
That opens out into history,
In radiant rapture she led
Her hero all panoplied,
And thrust him from her to be,
On mission immortal bent,
Transngurer of despair,
The champion of Liberty,
The hope of a continent,
God's answer to prayer.



THE PEOPLE'S KING.

Not oft such marvel the years reveal,

Such beauteous thing,

A People's King,
The chosen liege of a chosen weal,

And Liberty's offering.

Not oft such product the fair world hath,

A People's Own,

On mightiest throne,

Whose strong foundations are Right and Faith,

And Virtue the corner-stone.
30



THE PEOPLE'S KING. 31

Not by earth's bounty was he prepared ;

Not princely store,

Nor golden lore
Was nurture on which his nature fared

For strength in the trust he bore ;



But inner largess of revenue,

Past time and space,

The fruits of grace,
That mellowed upon the tree which grew

God's food for a famished race.



In history's mirror he truly saw
The ages' strife,



32 ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

With passion rife,
'Neath covenant promise a changeless law-
Writ clear in its serial life.



He learned from the centuries' battle-fields

What heroes are,

How maim and scar
Are gloried trophies to him who yields

Himself to the shocks of war ;

That patriot sires have taught their sons,

Since days of eld,

How Truth is held,
And Justice fashions a nation's guns

Never to be repelled.



THE PEOPLE'S KING. 33

Thus was it a purpose for valiant deeds,

Like whitening flame,

Through all his frame
Swept burning until his Country's needs

His one great thought became.



Thus was it he took in his sovereign hand,

With face to fate,

The orb of state,
To serve his Country and God, and stand

To them all consecrate.

3



THE GREAT EXPECTANCE.

He mounted to the People's mystic throne,
And counted, as he clomb, each step sublime ;

He marked where its foundations, stone on
stone,
Sank deep into the crimsoned soil of time.

His tread became a kneeling as he rose

Transfigured by historic overflows.

His was the great remembrance of the years,

The panoramic vision of the cost
Of Right victorious through blood and tears,

One day of triumph after thousands lost.
He felt the solemn glory of th' ascent, —
The passing of a centuried sacrament.

34



THE GREAT EXPECTANCE. 35

So rose he, setting full his thoughts unfurled,
Toward high and regnant duty. At his heart

He felt th' expectant chargings of the world
For wisdom greater than the statesman's art,

And likewise power, beyond the gift of place,

For saving of a nation and a race.



So sat he on his high and sacred seat, —

He who knew God and God's perplexing
ways, —
Believing God and patient with the feet

Of the swift-shod but loitering, with the
praise
And blame commingled, waiting the clear word
Which God's true seers at last have ever heard.



36 ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

So reigned he as amid the seraphim, —

Albeit the powers of darkness were let loose;

So saw he, where all other eyes were dim,
The fiery pillar set for Freedom's use;

And when the fulness of the time was come

He ushered in Right's first millennium.



THE NATION'S AWAKENING.



37



FORT SUMTER.

O'ER sea-girt fortress set toward Charleston's
orient sun
Columbia's banner waved, and 'neath it, in

array,
A noble band stood waiting for the break of
day,
And Southland's primal gun.

Soon from Palmetto shores and isles historic
burst
War's first unfilial thunder, and a signal shell

39



40 ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

Rose screaming seaward over guardian
citadel,
Predestined and accurst.

An omened silence ; then from bastioned shoals
of ire,
Raged, blazing under wide and reddened fir-
mament,
One hurricane of havoc into swift descent
Of fierce columbiad fire.

Guns answered guns, till thrice from morn to
eventide
The worn defenders strove behind embat-
tered bars,



FORT SUMTER. 4 1

And, faithful to their Country's hallowed
Stripes and Stars,
Rebellion's host defied.

At length, within shot-swept and ravaged ram-
parts, broke
Mad conflagration, driven 'neath furious can-
nonade,
As if the traitorous Earth had molten wrath
displayed
Hurled through volcanian smoke.

Before resistless storm the standard fell, but
leapt
Aloft mid clouds enfuming, and in proud
disdain



42 ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

Streamed from its splintered staff above the
wreck and pain
And vows of soldiers kept.

Thrust forth by flame and fate, all honored
in retreat,
They unsurrendering went, their banner

holding fast
To float thereon again, redeemed, and be at
last
Their leader's winding-sheet.

The die was cast ; Secession's deed flashed to
renown ;
The golden South had drunk of her self-
poisoned cup ;



FORT SUMTER. 43

And swift a loyal People's slumberous blood
rose up
When Sumter's flag went down.

And one, a Nation's Prophet, with sad eyes
afar
Beholding, steadfast gazed beyond near space

and time
Upon th' advancing tide, and saw it sweep
sublime
The purple paths of war.



COLUMBIA'S WRATH.

THE guns that fired on Sumter's walls
Awoke a Nation ; far and near
Were cries of anguish, bursts of fear

And burning judgment calls.



Beloved Columbia, wounded sore,
A moment staggered ; then her form
Rose towering, while a gathering storm

Her darkening features wore.

44



COLUMBIA'S WRATH. 45

Her flag that waved o'er Southern sea
Had fallen while she slept ; but now
The cloud upon her bended brow

Was certain augury



Of hastening vengeance, and the fire,
That flashed from all her kindled tips
Of being, was apocalypse

Of purpose swift and dire ;



Of purpose dire until the Right

In dust and blood should conquer Wrong;

Till mists should lift and morning's song
Sound through the passing night;



46 ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

Till victor hosts should rise and plant
That flag on Sumter's height again ;
And wipe away for aye her stain,

And sign her covenant,



Blood-writ across a million graves,
That, in her undivided land,
There nevermore should rest a band

Upon a race of slaves.



RETRIBUTION.

TRUTH is not truth and error. Truth alone
She ever is, and what is done for Truth

Forever lives, the while the world is grown
To betterness, and all the fire of youth

Flames in the centuried frame and march of
things,

Lasts in the ages' vast recoverings.

Vengeance God takes, and God has vengeance
time,
Wherein the deed returns on him who sins
' Gainst Truth's white stars of right. Such
fashions rime
In the great order of the world, and wins
The refluent tides of history back from shame,
Giving to Justice her eternal claim.

47



48 ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

God is no tyrant ; immemorial laws

He armors Nature with, set rank on rank

Amid the suns, whose gloried presence draws
Admiring eyes, makes music, fills the blank

' Twixt God and man with Love's high instru-
ments

That work high Love's continuous descents.



Who violates God's laws arch-foe becomes
To all that makes himself God's miniature,

To all that heralds Love's millenniums,
That holds the pillars of creation sure.

He is his own destroyer who destroys

What God has fashioned and what God em-
ploys.



RETRIBUTION. 49

Fulness of time, fulness of circumstance,
High indignation, sense of righteousness,

Remembrance of shed blood and all th' advance
Of Freedom got through battle-storm and
stress,

The cries of captives God created free,

Assault upon a nation's destiny !



The deed's return ! Bright swords of cherubim
Whirled everywhither through the thunder-
ous night.

The white battalions flamed along the rim
Of the recoiling earth. Th' eternal light

Of retribution, glimmering from afar,

Became the Right's inviolate avatar.



THE PEOPLE'S UPRISING.



51



THE CALL TO ARMS.

Beside Columbia stood one
Begot of Holy Liberty ;
Exalted by her grace to be

Her favored regnant son.



That sacred trust his heart and brain
In swift and sweet devotion drew ;
And well his loyal nature knew

The measure of her pain.

53



54 ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

And all his being rose with hers ;
Till, facing her untongued distress,
Remembering the faithfulness

Of past deliverers,



He took from out his sacred girth
The golden trumpet which he bore ;
Blew such a blast as ne'er before

Was heard in all the earth ;



A blast that sounded war's alarms,

From north to south, from east to west
Columbia's supreme behest,

The Nation's call to arms.



THE PEOPLE'S RESPONSE.

It rang o'er the startled land,
One sovereign blast of command.
It rolled from sea unto sea,
The summons of Liberty.
It broke 'gainst the scintillant hills,
Resounding in multiple thrills
Of wakening thunder. It swept
Through valleys and over streams,
The militant havoc of dreams
Of troubled millions that slept.
It stirred all hearts as it went,

Arousing a continent.

55



$6 ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

The People's answer came ;
A splendor burst on the night ;
The crests of the hills were flame ;
The valleys were lines of light ;
The winds were voices of trust ;
A soul was incarnate in dust ;
The frame of the struggling earth
Drew nigh to a second birth.

The People leapt to their feet,
Their strength like a giant's brawn,
Their zeal like a furnace heat,
Their hope like the widening dawn.

And up to the throne of Him
Who reigns 'twixt the cherubim,



THE PEOPLE'S RESPONSE. 57

'Mid supplicatory throes

A vow inviolate rose ;

That, be it through torturing pain,

Their banner should rise again ;

That ne'er should the Federal Stars

Give place to the Southern Bars ;

That, under God's judgment sky,

Rebellion at last should lie

In overthrow complete

Beneath Columbia's feet.

And thus a People quivering stood,
And offered their blood.

The crags replied to the echoing crags,
And flags waved answer to flags.



58



ABRAHAM LINCOLN.



O'er wharf and harbor, o'er vale and hill,

And loyal domicile,

O'er school and languishing academe

A banner floated supreme.

O'er bustling mart and thoroughfare

One standard streamed to the air.

From argent turrets and glittering spires

The pennons of sainted sires

Were signs of a storied Faith that wore

Her lustrous robes as of yore.

The steam-shod chargers of turbulent trade,

Thundering through meadow and glade,

Were freighted for Freedom, and southward flew

Ablaze with the Red, White and Blue.

And vows were written again and again,

Till earth was a manuscript



THE PEOPLE'S RESPONSE.



59



Illuminated by patriot pen
In triplicate glory dipt.



The plow was left in the fallow field

For sake of a larger yield.

The iron lay cold in the smouldering flame

Because of a higher claim.

The rattling shuttle, the whirring loom

Were hushed at the cannon's boom.

And over the land the market's hum

Gave place to the fife and drum.

The workers, trained for the shop and mill,

Aspired to a warrior's skill.

The poet deserted his golden song

To join the armed throng.



6o ABRAHAM LINCOLN.

The sculptor forsook his half-carved stone

At sound of the bugle blown.

Each town and hamlet became a spring

Of chivalric issuing,

A living current of sacrifice

Full-set toward a great emprise.

The plowshares sprang into glistening swords,

And pruning-hooks into spears ;

Love's accents broke into farewell words,

And laughter was changed to tears.

Across the threshold the mother gave

Her son for a soldier's grave ;

And freely yielded the weeping wife

The heart of her heart for strife.

Despair strode in through the gates of home,

And Hope fled forth to roam.



THE PEOPLE'S RESPONSE. 6l

All hearts were one, and the Nation's soul

Moved on toward its sacred goal.

Beneath the sky's cerulean hue

The hills and the vales were blue.

The sun flashed down, in its dazzling wheel,

On billows of bristling steel.



THE GATHERING OF THE LEGIONS.

Majestic swept from coast to coast

Columbia's azure-liveried host.

From Pilgrim havens, from Pine-Tree shades,

And over the walls of the Palisades ;

From Eldorado's aureate sand,

Past geyser vales of the Wonderland ;

From linked lakes, from the castled mounds

Of Gathering Waters, from forest bounds ;

O'er purple canyons and ferny glens,

Ravined plateaus and miasmal fens,

Meridian rivers and prairies wide,

And granite domes of the Great Divide ;

From Empire Portal, from Golden Gate,
62



THE GATHERING OF THE LEGIONS. 63

To Country and Liberty consecrate,
With " Union forever" their rallying cry,
To stand for the Colors, or under them die,
By one unfaltering faith controlled,
The patriot legions onward rolled ;
On, on, at the clarion call of him
Who stood with face to a spectre grim,


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