Verse > Anthologies > William McCarty, ed. > The American National Song Book
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William McCarty, comp.  The American National Song Book.  1842.
 
Columbia’s Hardy Seamen
 
GAYLY, lads, our friends we’re leaving,
  Honour calls us to the main,
Sweethearts! what’s the use of grieving?
  We but part to meet again.
 
Soon avenged our country’s quarrels,        5
  What delicious joys we’ll prove,
Sweet reposing, crown’d with laurels
  In the arms of those we love!
 
Love of country, love of glory,
  From our mothers’ breasts we drew;        10
Our forefathers, famed in story,
  Gave the bright example too.
 
Hail, Columbia’s hardy seamen,
  Bravely bred on boisterous waves—
Faithful to ourselves as freemen,        15
  Not the world can make us slaves.
 
“Arm our floating towers of timber,”
  Congress bids—each pulse beats higher;
Show the world our joints are limber,
  Nerves of steel, and souls of fire.        20
 
Now our breasts, with ardour glowing,
  Feel our bold forefathers’ flame;
Through our veins their pure blood flowing,
  Can our deeds disgrace their name?
 
Haste, then, seize each plundering corsair,        25
  Where the waves insulted roll?
Trade protect in every quarter,
  From the tropic to the pole.
 
Thence to the wide world’s wonder,
  Masters of the mighty deep;        30
While we guard our coast with thunder,
  Yet at home may safely sleep.
 
Let us live a band of brothers,
  Whether on the land or sea;
’Tis our strength, and not another’s,        35
  That would make or keep us free;
 
Never fearing foes or weather,
  Union being still our boast:
Free we’ll live, or die together—
  “Union!” boys, in bumpers toast.        40
 
 
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