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Ashlar Home > Poems > Albert Pike > The Struggle for Freedom

The Struggle for Freedom

By Albert Pike

The Ancient Wrong rules many a land, whose groans
Rise swarming to the stars by day and night,
Thronging with mournful clamour round the thrones
Where the Archangels sit in God's great light,
And, pitying, mourn to see that Wrong still reigns,
And tortured Nations writhe in galling chains.

From Hungary and France fierce cries go up
And beat against the portals of the skies
Lashed Italy still drinks the bitter cup,
And Germany in abject stupor lies
The knout on Poland's bloody shoulders rings,
And Time is all one jubilee of kings.

It will not be so always. Through the night
The suffering multitudes with joy descry
Beyond the ocean a great beacon-light,
Flashing its rays into their starless sky,
And teaching them to struggle and be free,
The Light of Order, Law, and Liberty.

Take heart, ye bleeding Nations and your chains
Shall shiver like thin glass. The dawn is near,
When Earth shall feel, through all her aged veins
The new blood pouring and her drowsy ear
Hear Freedom's trumpet ringing in the sky,
Calling her braves to conquer or to die.

Arm and revolt, and let the hunted stags
Against the lordly lions stand at bay!
Each pass, Thermopl, and all the crags,
Young Freedom's fortresses! and soon the day
Shall come when Right shall rule, and round the thrones
that gird God's feet shall eddy no more groans.
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