100 History of Wake Forest College
Forgive these words in grief and anger said;
Forgive, you more than martyred dead !
For yours was more than victory.
The young man's vision and the old man's dream
You gave us back awhile, and to each face
Again the morning's glow and gleam;
Away, the narrow act, the narrow thought,
The tinsel gawd so dearly bought;
No more in pride of youth and strength we stand
Boastful, aloof, behind leagues of sea;
In the great march of man we take our place,
Shoulder to shoulder now with brother race
Fearless to reach a brother hand
To raise the fallen in whatever land,
To right the wrong wherever wrong may be.
Was it too great, the price we paid
For our vain dream? What price had been too great,
Once to have freed all Europe from the weight
Of nightmare years of armed hate;
Forever to have laid
The spectre of the red right hand
And blazing brand,
Still overshadowing sea and land:
To have made once more the patriot's word
In councils of the people heard:
And given the world a peace that saith
Nation with Nation shall keep faith?
And he, our Chieftain and our guide,
Fallen, when sorest needed, by Potomac's side,
His hour of triumph still denied;
Shall we the tardy years await
To show all honor to the man,
So sternly just, so singly great,
So brave to bear the hand of Fate?
And shall it fail, the goodliest plan
Of our poor wisdom since the world began?
Or shall it be the dawning's tremulous ray
Broadening at last into the perfect day
Of peace on earth, good will to men?