“THE SOUTHERN CROSS.”
By St. Geo. Tucker, of Virginia.
Published in 1860, a few months before the author’s death.
|Oh! say can you see, through the gloom and the storms,|
More bright for the darkness, that pure constellation?
Like the symbol of love and redemption its form,
As it points to the haven of hope for the nation.
How radiant each star, as the beacon afar,
Giving promise of peace, or assurance in war!
Chorus—’Tis the Cross of the South, which shall ever remain
To light us to freedom and glory again!
How peaceful and blest was America’s soil,
’Til betrayed by the guile of the Puritan demon,
Which lurks under virtue, and springs from its coil
To fasten its fangs in the life-blood of freemen.
Then boldly appeal to each heart that can feel,
And crush the foul viper ’neath Liberty’s heel!
’Tis the emblem of peace, ’tis the day-star of hope,
Like the sacred Labarum that guided the Roman;
From the shores of the Gulf to the Delaware’s slope,
’Tis the trust of the free and the terror of foeman.
Fling its folds to the air, while we boldly declare
The rights we demand or the deeds that we dare!
And if peace should be hopeless and justice denied,
And war’s bloody vulture should flap its black pinions,
Then gladly “To arms,” while we hurl, in our pride,
Defiance to tyrants and death to their minions!
With our front to the field, swearing never to yield,
Or return, like the Spartan, in death on our shield!
Chorus—And the Cross of the South shall triumphantly wave
As the flag of the free or the pall of the brave.