Verse > Anthologies > Higginson and Bigelow, eds. > American Sonnets
Higginson and Bigelow, comps.  American Sonnets.  1891.
Decoration Day
By Langdon Elwyn Mitchell (1862–1935)
WITH acclamation and with trumpet tone,
  With prayer and praise, and with triumphal state
  Of warlike columns, and the moving weight
  Of men, whose firmness, never overthrown,
Proved itself steadfast; which did add to fate        5
  Speed, vision, certainty, and ever grown
  More terrible as more enduring shone
  A fire of retribution and swift hate,
All visibly advancing—with these we keep
  Unsullied in our breast and pure and white        10
  The spirit of gratitude that may not sleep,—
A nation’s safeguard against shame and blight,—
  Since sacred memories and the tears men weep
  Alone can keep a nation at its height.

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