Henry Lynden Flash

The Confederate Flag

Four stormy years we saw it gleam,
A people's hope...and then refurled,
Even while its glory was the theme
Of half the world.

A beacon that with streaming ray
Dazzled a struggling nation's sight--
Seeming a pillar of cloud by day,
Of fire by night.

They jeer who trembled as it hung,
Comet-like blazoning the sky--
And heroes, such as Homer sung,
Followed it to die.

It fell...but stainless as it rose,
Martyred, like Stephen, in the strife--
Passing, like him, girdled with foes,
From Death to Life.

Flame's trophy! Sanctified with tears--
Planted forever at her portal;
Folded, true: What then? Four short years
Made it immortal!

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