Verse > Anthologies > William McCarty, ed. > The American National Song Book
William McCarty, comp.  The American National Song Book.  1842.
The Fourth of July—1803
Tune—“Galley Slave”

LET despots retain all their minions in chains,
  And each dastard soul kiss the rod;
Columbia such slavery to mortals disdains:
  The king we acknowledge is God.
Those lords by succession, and kings by descent,        5
  Their right for to rule we deny;
Our laws are adopted by Freedom’s consent,
  And we boast—still we boast of a Fourth of July.
Though Europe still holds her degenerate race,
  By king-craft and priest-craft conjoin’d,        10
Those shackles our country shall never embrace,
  Though against us they both are combined.
Columbia on Freedom’s fair fabric shall rest,
  And on Independence rely.
Her shores still shall succour the poor and oppress’d,        15
  And let them rejoice on the Fourth of July.
There thousands in poverty spend their whole lives
  One lordship in pomp to maintain:
Millions starve, for one king, their children and wives,
  In indigence, sorrow, and pain.        20
And these monstrous growths are excrescences still,
  Though raised on their thrones e’er so high:
Nor can aught in their annals compare with the Bill
  Of Rights we obtained on the Fourth of July.

Shakespeare · Bible · Strunk · Anatomy · Nonfiction · Quotations · Reference · Fiction · Poetry
© 1993–2015 · [Top 150] · Subjects · Titles · Authors · World Lit.