Verse > Anthologies > Thomas R. Lounsbury, ed. > Yale Book of American Verse
Thomas R. Lounsbury, ed. (1838–1915). Yale Book of American Verse.  1912.
John Greenleaf Whittier. 1807–1892
79. Dedication of "In War Time"
To Samuel E. Sewall and Harriet W. Sewall of Melrose
OLOR Iscanus queries: "Why should we 
Vex at the land's ridiculous miserie?" 
So on his Usk banks, in the blood-red dawn 
Of England's civil strife, did careless Vaughan 
Bemock his times. O friends of many years!         5
Though faith and trust are stronger than our fears, 
And the signs promise peace with liberty, 
Not thus we trifle with our country's tears 
And sweat of agony. The future's gain 
Is certain as God's truth; but, meanwhile, pain  10
Is bitter and tears are salt: our voices take 
A sober tone; our very household songs 
Are heavy with a nation's griefs and wrongs; 
And innocent mirth is chastened for the sake 
Of the brave hearts that nevermore shall beat,  15
The eyes that smile no more, the unreturning feet! 

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