Menken, Adah Isaacs
|HEAR, O ISRAEL!|
Brothers mine, filing out your white banners over this
Red Sea of wrath!
Hear ye not the Death-cry of a thousand burning,
bleeding wrongs?84Against the enemy lift thy sword of fire, even thou, O
Israel! Whose prophet I am.
For I, of all thy race, with these tear-blinded eyes, still
see the watch-fire leaping up its blood-red flame from the
ramparts of our Jerusalem!
And my heart alone beats and palpitates, rises and falls
with the glimmering and the gleaming of the golden beacon
flame, by whose light I shall lead thee, O my people!
back to freedom!
Give me time--oh give me time to strike from your
brows the shadow crowns of Wrong!
On the anvil of my heart will I rend the chains that
Look upon me--oh look upon me, as I turn from the
world--from love, and passion, to lead thee, thou Chosen
of God, back to the pastures of Right and Life!
Fear me not; for the best blood that heaves this heart
now runs for thee, thou Lonely Nation!
Why wear ye not the crown of eternal royalty, that God
set down upon you heads?
Back, tyrants of the red hands!
Slouch back to your ungodly tents, and hide the
cainbrand on your foreheads!
Life for life, blood for blood, is the lesson ye teach
We, the Children of Israel, will not creep to the kennel
graves ye are scooping out with iron hands, like scourged
Israel! Rouse ye from the slumber of ages, and, though
Hell welters at your feet, carve a road through these
tyrants!85The promised dawn-light is here; and God--O the God
of our nation is calling!
Press on--press on!