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"Boston as Seen From the Harvard Bridge"

Lloyd McKim Garrison Prize Poem.

By J. G. Gilkey .

A dozen spires against the sky--

A plain of roofs--the circled glow

Of one great dome--a canyon'd street--

The prisoned river far below;

Shrill echoes of a teeming way--

A whistle's Iron-throated cry--

The clatter of a road of stone--

Unnumbered steps that murmur by.

The savage knew thy triple hill,

The dauntless Pilgrim turned to thee,

Thy snowy street was first to bear

The crimson flower of liberty.

Thy sons were champion of the slave,

Thy children fashioned Cuba's fate--

And still a mighty work is thine,

Staid guardian of our northeast gate!

From lands where sunset is the dawn

The nations bring their gifts to thee

On double roads of ringing steel

And laden pathways of the sea.

Oh wake in pleasure-stifled ears

The challenge of unsorted spoil--

Give us a task, and guard our lips

From boasting in another's toil.

Across thy stream our fathers came

To find the knowledge born of men;

With thee they tracked the circling stars

And heard the songs of Rome again.

Thou gavest them the seeds of strength,

The glimpses of a world unwon--

Oh give that power now, reveal

The father's vision to the son.

Awake the buried soul that cried

For justice from a haughty king,

And bid our later monarchs share

With all the spoil that all may bring.

Oh touch our drowsy hearts with shame

For sunless homes where sin is piled,

And call us from the shrines of gold

Built on the ruins of a child.

Now fades the day behind the stream,

The quivering lights begin to glow,

A thousand footsteps eager come,

A thousand others weary go.

On toiling tide and plundered hill

The ageless challenge rings again--

Each light a shrine for sacrifice,

Each step a trumpet call for men.

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