To the United States Senate
The following verses were written on the evening of March the first, nineteen hundred and eleven, and printed next morning in the Illinois State Register.
They celebrate the arrival of the news that the United States Senate had declared the election of William Lorimer good and valid, by a vote of forty-six to forty.
[Revelation 16: Verses 16-19]
AND must the Senator from Illinois
Be this squat thing, with blinking, half-closed eyes?
This brazen gutter idol, reared to power
Upon a leering pyramid of lies?
And must the Senator from Illinois
Be the world's proverb of successful shame,
Dazzling all State house flies that steal and steal,
Who, when the sad State spares them, count it fame?
If once or twice within his new won hall
His vote had counted for the broken men;
If in his early days he wrought some good—
We might a great soul's sins forgive him then.
But must the Senator from Illinois
Be vindicated by fat kings of gold?
And must he be belauded by the smirched,
The sleek, uncanny chiefs in lies grown old?
Be warned, O wanton ones, who shielded him—
Black wrath awaits. You all shall eat the dust.
You dare not say: "To-morrow will bring peace;
Let us make merry, and go forth in lust."
What will you trading frogs do on a day
When Armageddon thunders thro' the land;
When each sad patriot rises, mad with shame,
His ballot or his musket in his hand?
In the distracted states from which you came
The day is big with war hopes fierce and strange;
Our iron Chicagos and our grimy mines
Rumble with hate and love and solemn change.
Too many weary men shed honest tears,
Ground by machines that give the Senate ease.
Too many little babes with bleeding hands
Have heaped the fruits of. empire on your knees.
And swine within the Senate in this day,
When all the smothering by-streets weep and wail;
When wisdom breaks the hearts of her best sons;
When kingly men, voting for truth, may fail :—
These are a portent and a call to arms.
Our protest turns into a battle cry:
"Our shame must end, our States be free and clean;
And in this war we choose to live and die."
[So far as the writer knows this is the first use of the popular term Armageddon in present day politics.]
|This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1923.
The author died in 1931, so this work is also in the public domain in countries and areas where the copyright term is the author's life plus 80 years or less. This work may also be in the public domain in countries and areas with longer native copyright terms that apply the rule of the shorter term to foreign works.