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Poem (Through The Dim Pageant Of The Years)

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Poem (Through The Dim Pageant Of The Years)

Julia Ward Howe

Through the dim pageant of the years

A wondrous tracery appears:

A cabin of the western wild

Shelters in sleep a new-born child.

 

Nor nurse, nor parent dear can know

The way those infant feet must go;

And yet a nation’s help and hope

Are sealed within that horoscope.

 

Beyond is toil for daily bread,

And thought, to noble issues led,

And courage, arming for the morn

For whose behest this man was born.

 

A man of homely, rustic ways,

Yet he achieves the forum’s praise,

And soon earth’s highest meed has won,

The seat and sway of Washington.

 

No throne of honors and delights;

Distrustful days and sleepless nights,

To struggle, suffer and aspire,

Like Israel, led by cloud and fire.

 

A treacherous shot, a sob of rest,

A martyr’s palm upon his breast,

A welcome from the glorious seat

Where blameless souls of heroes meet;

 

And, thrilling through unmeasured days,

A song of gratitude and praise;

A cry that all the earth shall heed,

To God, who gave him for our need.