The rich man's son inherits cares;

The bank may break, the factory burn, A breath may burst his bubble shares,

And soft, white hands could hardly earn

A living that would serve his turn;
A heritage, it seems to me,
One scarce would wish to hold in fee.
The rich man's son inherits wants,

His stomach craves for dainty fare ;
With sated heart he hears the pants

Of toiling hinds with brown arms bare,

And wearies in his easy chair;
A heritage, it seems to me,
One scarce would wish to hold in fee.
What doth the poor man's son inherit ?

Stout muscles and a sinewy heart,
A hardy frame, a hardier spirit;

King of two hands, he does his part

In every useful toil and art;
A heritage, it seems to me,
A king might wish to hold in fee.
What doth the poor man's son inherit !

Wishes o'erjoy'd with humble things,
A rank adjudged by toil-won merit,

Content that from employment springs,

A heart that in his labor sings;
A heritage, it seems to me,
A king might wish to hold in fee.
What doth the poor man's son inherit?

A patience learn’d of being poor,
Courage, if sorrow come, to bear it,

A fellow-feeling that is sure

To make the outcast bless his door;
A heritage, it seems to me,
A king might wish to hold in fee.
O rich man's son! there is a toil,

That with all others level stands;
Large charity doth never soil,

But only whiten, soft, white hands,

This is the best crop from thy lands;
A heritage, it seems to me,
Worth being rich to hold in fee.
O poor man's son! scorn not thy state;

There is worse weariness than thine,
In merely being rich and great;

Toil only gives the soul to shine,

And makes rest fragrant and benign;
A heritage, it seems to me,
Worth being poor to hold in fee.
Both, heirs to some six feet of sod,

Are equal in the earth at last;

Both, children of the same dear God,

Prove title to your heirship vast

By record of a well-fill’d past;
A heritage, it seems to me,
Well worth a life to hold in fee.



O dwellers in the valley-land,

Who in deep twilight grope and cower, Till the slow mountain's dial-hand

Shortens to noon's triumphal hour,– While ye sit idle, do ye think

The Lord's great work sits idle too? That light dare not o'erleap the brink

Of morn, because 'tis dark with you? Though yet your valleys skulk in night,

In God's ripe fields the day is cried, And reapers, with their sickles bright,

Troop, singing, down the mountain-side: Come up, and feel what health there is

In the frank Dawn's delighted eyes, As, bending with a pitying kiss,

The night-shed tears of Earth she dries ! The Lord wants reapers: Oh, mount up

Before night comes, and says, “ Too late!” Stay not for taking scrip or cup,

The Master hungers while ye wait: 'Tis from these heights alone your eyes

The advancing spears of day can see, Which o'er the eastern hill-tops rise,

To break your long captivity.


Lone watcher on the mountain-height!

It is right prec to behold
The first long surf of climbing light

Flood all the thirsty east with gold;
But we, who in the shadow sit,

Know also when the day is nigh,
Seeing thy shining forehead lit

With his inspiring prophecy.
Thou hast thine office; we have ours;

God lacks not early service here,
But what are thine eleventh hours

He counts with us for morning cheer; Our day, for Him, is long enough,

And when He giveth work to do, The bruised reed is amply tough

To pierce the shield of error through.

But not the less do thou aspire

Light's earlier messages to preach; Keep back no syllable of fire,

Plunge deep the rowels of thy speech; Yet God deems not thine aëried sight

More worthy than our twilight dim,For meek Obedience, too, is Light,

And following that is finding Him.


The busy world shoves angrily aside
The man who stands with arms akimbo set,
Until occasion tells him what to do;
And he who waits to have his task mark'd out
Shall die and leave his errand unfulfill'd.
Our time is one that calls for earnest deeds :
Reason and Government, like two broad seas,
Yearn for each other with outstretched arms
Across this narrow isthmus of the throne,
And roll their white surf higher every day.
One age moves onward, and the next builds up
Cities and gorgeous palaces, where stood
The rude log huts of those who tamed the wild,
Rearing from out the forests they had fellid
The goodly framework of a fairer state;
The builder's trowel and the settler's axe
Are seldom wielded by the selfsame hand;
Ours is the harder task, yet not the less
Shall we receive the blessing for our toil
From the choice spirits of the after-time.
The field lies wide before us, where to reap
The easy harvest of a deathless name,
Though with no better sickles than our swords.
My soul is not a palace of the past,
Where outworn creeds, like Rome's gray senate, quake,
Hearing afar the Vandal's trumpet hoarse,
That shakes old systems with a thunder-fit.
The time is ripe, and rotten-ripe, for change;
Then let it come: I have no dread of what
Is call’d for by the instinct of mankind;
Nor think I that God's world will fall apart
Because we tear a parchment more or less.
Truth is eternal, but her effluence,
With endless change, is fitted to the hour;
Her mirror is turn'd forward, to reflect
The promise of the future, not the past.
He who would win the name of truly great
Must understand his own age and the next,
And make the present ready to fulfil
Its prophecy, and with the future merge
Gently and peacefully, as wave with wave.
The future works out great men's destinies ;
The present is enough for common souls,

Who, never looking forward, are indeed
Mere clay wherein the footprints of their age
Are petrified forever : better those
Who lead the blind old giant by the hand
From out the pathless desert where he gropes,
And set him onward in his darksome way.
I do not fear to follow out the truth,
Albeit along the precipice's edge.
Let us speak plain: there is more force in names
Than most men dream of; and a lie may keep
Its throne a whole age longer if it skulk
Behind the shield of some fair-seeming name.
Let us call tyrants tyrants, and maintain
That only freedom comes by grace of God,
And all that comes not by his grace must fall ;
For men in earnest have no time to waste
In patching fig-leaves for the naked truth.



Look on who will in apathy, and stifle they who can,
The sympathies, the hopes, the words, that make man truly man;
Let those whose hearts are dungeon'd up with interest or with ease
Consent to hear with quiet pulse of loathsome deeds like these!
I first drew in New England's air, and from her hardy breast
Suck'd in the tyrant-hating milk that will not let me rest ;
And if my words seem treason to the dullard and the tame,
'Tis but my Bay-State dialect, -our fathers spake the same!
Shame on the costly mockery of piling stone on stone
To those who won our liberty, the heroes dead and gone,
While we look coldly on, and see law-shielded ruffians slay
The men who fain would win their own, the heroes of to-day!
Are we pledged to craven silence ? Oh, fling it to the wind,
The parchment wall that bars us from the least of human kind,-
That makes us cringe and temporize, and dumbly stand at rest,
While Pity's burning flood of words is red-hot in the breast !
Though we brenk our fathers' promise, we have nobler duties first ;
The traitor to Humanity is the traitor most accursed;
Man is more than Constitutions ; better rot beneath the sod
Than be true to Church and State while we are doubly false to God!
We owe allegiance to the State; but deeper, truer, more,
To the sympathies that God hath set within our spirits' core;
Our country claims our fealty: we grant it so; but then
Before Man made us citizens, great Nature made us men.
He's true to God who's true to man; wherever wrong is done,
To the humblest and the weakest, 'neath the all-beholding sun,
That wrong is also done to us; and they are slaves most base,
Whose love of right is for themselves, and not for all their race.

God works for all. Ye cannot hem the hope of being free
With parallels of latitude, with mountain-range or sea.
Put golden padlocks on Truth's lips, be callous as ye will,
From soul to soul, o'er all the world, leaps one electric thrill.
Chain down your slaves with ignorance, ye cannot keep apart,
With all your craft of tyranny, the human heart from heart :
When first the Pilgrims landed on the Bay-State's iron shore,
The word went forth that slavery should one day be no more.
Out from the land of bondage 'tis decreed our slaves shall go,
And signs to us are offer'd, as erst to Pharaoh ;
If we are blind, their exodus, like Israel's of yore,
Through a Red Sea is doom'd to be, whose surges are of gore.
'Tis ours to save our brethren, with peace and love to win
Their darken'd hearts from error, ere they harden it to sin ;
But if man before his duty with a listless spirit stands,
Ere long the Great Avenger takes the work from out his hands.


Giddings, far rougher names than thine have grown

Smoother than honey on the lips of men;
And thou shalt aye be honorably known

As one who bravely used his tongue and pen
As best befits a freeman,-

-even for those
To whom our Law's unblushing front denies
A right to plead against the life-long woes

Which are the Negro's glimpse of Freedom's skies:
Fear nothing and hope all things, as the Right

Alone may do securely ; every hour
The thrones of Ignorance and ancient Night

Lose somewhat of their long-usurpéd power,
And Freedom's lightest word can make them shiver
With a base dread that clings to them forever.

Joshua R. Giddings, now (1858) the oldest member of the United States House of Representatives, was born in Athens, Bradford County, Pennsylvania, on the 6th of Oct er, 1795. While in his infancy, his father removed to Canandaigua, New York, and remained there till 1806, when he removed to Ashtabula County, Ohio. Having a strong taste for literature, he determined to enter professional life; and by constant labor and self-denying efforts he was enabled to present himself for admission to the bar in 1820. His practice soon became extensive. In a few years, he was elected to the Legislature of his own State, and in 1838 to a seat in the United States House of Representatives. In February, 1838, he made his first anti-slavery speech in Congress. In 1842, be was cen. sured by the House of Representatives for introducing anti-slavery resolutions. He at once resigned, returned home, appealed to his constituents, and in five weeks was returned by an overwhelming majority. There he has remained ever since,-a most vigilant and faithful watehinan on the watch-tower of liberty. His Congressional speeches bave been published in a handsome volume of 511 pages,-a monument to his courage and faithfulness to truth more enduring than granite or marble. In 1958, be published an historical work of deep interest, and designed to tell, not conceal, the truth, entitled, The Exiles of Florida: or the Crimes committed by our Government against the Maroons, icho fled from Suuik Carolina a:d other Slave States, seeking Protection under Spanish Lawe.

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