Like a roll of distant thunder
The pickets tramp their beat.
And our slave enshackled brothers
Can hear their marching feet.
Even as the guns of Sumter*
Belched harbingers of doom.
For a system long out-moded
And consigned it to its tomb
Mark the surging ranks of freemen!
Oh! Hark ye to their songs!
Flung against the walls of plunder.
Assailing ancient wrongs
Mighty is their righteous anger,
And terrible their wrath!
They,the fighting hope of millions
Who tread the union path
Naught can stay eventual victory
Or madmen hope to ban—
Culmination of our triumph.
The Brotherhood of Man!
*Fort Sumpter was a military base
of the US Government in the harbour
of Charlestown, South Carolina;
its bombardment by slave-holding
secessionists marked the start
of the Amemrican civil war [1861-1865]
The Militant, USA, February 1946