Verse > Anthologies > William McCarty, ed. > The American National Song Book
William McCarty, comp.  The American National Song Book.  1842.
Song: ‘Far o’er the sounding billows’
By Jacob B. Moore
Tune—“Ye Mariners,” &c.

FAR o’er the sounding billows,
  By power compell’d to roam,
Fair Liberty a refuge sought,
  And here hath found a home!
On every hill her altars blaze,        5
  In every vale she dwells;
    And her cheer, even here,
  All our other gifts excels;
And will, while earth its fruits shall bear,
  Or the wave of ocean swells.        10
Fame to the distant nations
  Of this bright realm had told,
Whose mountains all with treasure teem’d,
  Whose sunny banks were gold!
Till far the wandering pilgrim came,        15
  And wretched sons of care,
    Here to rest, in the West,
  Free from sorrow and despair—
Where blooms the garden of the world
  And rich its bounties are.        20
Now on Britannia’s slumbers
  A direful vision gleam’d;
A bright star o’er the western world
  In flood of glory beam’d!
Her sun a veil of darkness wore!        25
  While a guiding pillar rose
    O’er the deep, safe to keep
  From the battle’s wreck her foes!
To rage the startled monarch wakes!
  And in strife the nations close!        30
Loud were the tyrant’s murmurs,
  But vain his angry frown—
For our eagle to the West had borne
  The jewel of his crown.
In vain he strives—in vain the deep        35
  To Neptune’s call replies—
    Or lightning’s flash and the crash
  Of the thunders shake the skies!—
Secure above the tempest’s rage,
  On airy wing she flies.        40
Victorious from the trial,
  Our valiant fathers rose;
And while above the stars shall shine,
  Thus will we meet our foes!
Let the Briton or the Gaul invade,        45
  Or the North its legions pour—
    They shall see how the free
  Will meet them on the shore—
While the “stars and stripes” on high shall wave,
  And “the Yankee thunders” roar!        50
Then sing unto those heroes—
  Awake the noblest strain!—
Undaunted who in battle bled,
  Our dearest rights to gain.
Forever shall their fame endure!        55
  Let’s pledge their memory here!
    And the song we’ll prolong,
  With delight, from year to year—
While Freedom lights the western skies,
  And her gifts our hearts shall cheer.        60

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