ON THE CHICAGO SURRENDER.
What! hoist the white flag when our triumph is nigh ?
What! crouch before Treason ? make Freedom a lie ?
What! spike all our guns when the foe is at bay
And the rags of his black banner dropping away ?
Tear down the strong name that our nation has won,
And strike her brave 'bird from his home in the sun ?
He's a coward who shrinks from the lift of the sword ;
He's a traitor who mocks at the sacrifice poured ;
Nameless and homeless the doom that should blast
The knave who stands idly till peril is past;
But he who submits when the thunders have burst
And victory dawns, is of cowards the worst!
Is the old spirit dead ? Are we broken and weak,
That cravens so shamelessly lift the white cheek
To court the swift insult, nor blush at the blow,
The tools of the Treason and friends of the foe!
See! Anarchy smiles at the peace which they ask,
And the eyes of Disunion flash out through the mask.
Give thanks, ye brave boys, who by vale and by crag
Bear onward, unfaltering, our noble old flag !
Strong arms of the Union, heroes living and dead,
For the blood of your valor is uselessly shed!
No soldier's green laurel is promised you here,
But the white rag of "sympathy" softly shall cheer!
And you, ye war martyrs! who preach from your graves
How captives are nursed by the masters of slaves,
Or, living, still linger in shadows of death,—
Puff out the starved muscle, recall the faint breath,
And shout, till those cowards rejoice at the cry :
" By the hands of the Union we fought for, we die !"
By the God of our Fathers ! this shame we must share,
But it grows too debasing for freemen to bear,
And Washington, Jackson, will turn in their graves
When the Union shall rest on two races of slaves,
Or, spurning the spirit which bound it of yore,
And sundered, exist as a nation no more !