America’s Banner
By a sailor, from the Wm. C. Nye’s forecastle
The Friend: March, 1845; page 43
Honolulu, Hawaii

 

 
 

The flag of our nation waves proudly on high,
Our magnificent streamers are sweeping the sky
And the proud bird of freedom now soaring afar,
Is illuminated by the radiance of liberty’s star.

On the bright azure vault in rich beauty above,
O’er our land it is floating, the land that we love,
O’er that land that our fathers long fought to secure,
Where the real fires of freedom burn brilliant and pure.

As that banner unfurled proudly kisses the skies,
So the nation in grandeur was destined to rise,
Till at length on the summit of glory we rest,
A vast nation of nobles, a world at the west.

By the strong bond of freedom, united we stand,
With our glory unsullied, immortal and grand.
While our name and our banner will ever convey,
To the realms of the earth our omnipotent sway.

But that sway is not despotic, our just laws are those,
Made for freemen’s protection from insolent foes;
Made to shelter the weak from the strong arm of spoil,
And secure to the laborer the fruit of his toil.

We do not wish for conquest, we strive not to gain
By our arms, or our gold, either island or main,
But we ardently hope that our “liberty tree,”
Long shall wave its broad boughs o’er the sons of the free.

From the masts of our barks as they roam o’er the waves,
From the hills that look down on our forefather’s graves,
From the temples of freedom that proudly aspire,
Like our own monarch bird, though far prouder and higher.

Now our stripes and our stars to the breezes are flung,
Though the bowstrings of war by our land are unstrung;
And ourselves, while our grandeur gleams proudly and far,
Rest secure in our homes, ‘neath our own natal star.

May this banner, now kissed by the breezes of heaven,
Float long o’er those shores, (by no despot e’re riven,)
Be the “signa” of freedom, and tyranny’s fall,
While united we stand, till divided we fall