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Publication information
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Source: Sunlight and Starlight
Source type: book
Document type: poem
Document title: “William McKinley”
Author(s): Kost, Henry G.
Publisher: Richard G. Badger
Place of publication: Boston, Massachusetts
Year of publication: 1911
Pagination: 17-18

 
Citation
Kost, Henry G. “William McKinley.” Sunlight and Starlight. Boston: Richard G. Badger, 1911: pp. 17-18.
 
Transcription
full text
 
Keywords
William McKinley (mourning: poetry); William McKinley (death: poetry).
 
Named persons
none.
 
Document

 

William McKinley

 

Died September 14th, 1901

Toll slow, O mournful bells,
Our sorrow from dolorous throats,
Your sad and solemn knells,
Your woe-betokening notes!
Ah, grief amongst us dwells,
And lowly our banner floats:

Our leader, chosen and tried,
Our chieftain, benign and great,
Our trust, and our hope, and our pride,
Hath given his life for the state. [17][18]

Your tribute, O cannons, roar
O’er our ocean-girt land and the seas,—
With your echoing thunder deplore,
And the weighted silence release.
Ah, well may our eagle soar,
Half-hearted, in days like these:

He hath fallen by coward hand,
Who, beloved and exalted, stood;
And a wail fills our cherished land,
At the loss of the great and the good.

Sound soft, O easeful airs,
Twining comfort with sorrow and tears,
Like a saint’s ascending pray’rs,
When death life’s blossom sears.
Ah, virtue honored fares,
Victorious o’er dread and fears:

O faith from those dying lips!
O love of that failing voice!
In your faintness pure eclipse
A thousand sermons choice.

Be hushed, O million sounds,
Ye tireless wheels be still!
For we all have a share in those wounds,
That our bosoms with anguish fill.
Ah, reverence glideth its rounds
With a sad and tremulous thrill:

Let us lay our leader to rest,
Our chieftain, faithful and great,
Enshrined in our hearts, ever blest,
Who gave his life for the state!

1901

 

 


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