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J \ JANUARY 1, 1866. Hail, thrice hail the new-born year! Welcome it with lieart-felt cheer! Welcome it by old and young— Welcome it in every tongue— Welcome it in cot and hall, By rich and poor, by great and small, As an hallowed festival. Welcome it with gratitude To the Author of all good? For the changes He hath wrought— Changes with such blessings fraught! Thanks that He hath held us up, Dashed aside the bitter cup Pressed unto the nation’s lip, Which she was compelled to sip ’Till its very dregs were drained For the crimes she stood arraigned. Which stem justice, long delayed, Claimed atonement to be made. Racked as never racked before, Crushed and bleeding at each pore, Shrouded in funereal gloom, Sealed as with Death’s awful doom, Prostrate, writhing hopelessly, As if drunk with agony— Thus our land, but yesterday, Like a wounded giant lay, Panting her life-breath away, While, dissembling, o’er her bent, OfPring kindly sentiment, Seeming friends but secret foe, Arming those who struck the blow— Friends who o’er her sufferings gloat, Stabbing at her heaving throat. Lo, the change I—as with new birth— Strongest, proudest on God’s earth, Strengthened by the fiery shock, Stands she firm as living rock! Scorn her power now who dare! Let proud potentates beware Of the eagle in his lair! But yesterday —oh, sight accurst!— Men like famished wolves athirst— • Men of common brotherhood Thirsted for each other’s blood! All the land one battle plain, Heaped with wounded, dying, slain, ’Till the earth with blood run o’er, Surfeited with human gore! All, when hostile armies meet, In the battle’s raging heat, Lost to all humanity All our better instincts flee— Madly rush we to the strife Reckless of the waste of life, ’Till has ceased the dread affray, And the fever pass’d away, Then, soul-sick, we shud’ring see All of this dread tragedy— Then with nerve and heart unstrung, Feel we as the poet sung: I stood upon the battle field— The strife of war was o'er, But many a horse ran masterless, With sides all bathed in gore: And dying men and dying steeds Were thickly scattered round, And blood-pools from their gaping wounds Lay clotted on the ground. And many a shattered limb was thrown Despairingly on high, And gory heads were lifted up < To sink again — and die: And prayers were heard, amid the pause Of thick and struggling breath, That God would hasten on the steps Of the destroyer — Death! And oft from out that carnage heap A laugh broke on the air— The frenzied laugh of dying men Disturbed the sufferer’s prayer— And then was heard the mangled steed, His last unearthly cries, When trampling on the wounded — dead— He stumbles, struggles—dies! I saw a stately steed rush on, His fetlocks thick with gore, And crush a fallen man:— a cry, A gasp — and all was o’er! I saw a bird with bloody beak Light on a youthful breast While throbbing yet with agony, And make his evening feast! Come forth unto the battle field, Ye arch conspirators— Come forth amid the dead and view This hellish work of yours! Ay, drop your glance, and bend your knees, And let your scoffmgs cease, Then cast ambition far away And pray to heaven for peace! War has ceased, thanks to our God Who has stayed His chast’ning rod! Though by foul and murd’rous blow All the land was plunged in woe— Though dismay reigned wild and wide When lamented Lincoln died— And the nation’s heart was wrung— Yet from evil good has sprung; Traitors who upheld the deed Have received their righteous meed. All their fiendish plots have failed— Justice triumphed — Right prevailed. Rest in peace, Good, Wise and Just I Nations mourn above thy dust: Unborn ages will proclaim Thy great worth, and bless thy name! Mark what changes vast appear Since the advent of the year: Where was darkness deep as night Flameth now a cheerful light, Where was heard the clash of steel, Ringeth now the merry peal! Where late flashed the lurid brand, Smiling Peace now weaves her wand: Where was heard the clank of chain, And the quiv’ring shriek of pain— Where the sigh of fettered slave Rose as from a covered grave— Where broke forth the stifled moan, Breathed unto her God alone, Of frail woman, bowed in dust, Victim of her master’s lust— (Could this be and God be just!) Now rise shouts and bursts of glee, And the song of jubilee From the disenthralled and free! Where was anguish, dumb despair, Now is heard the grateful prayer, Rising incense-like to heaven For the great deliv’rance given! Let the lapd as with one voice In these blessed fruits rejoice— Let the anthem swell the sky, Glory be to God on High !