Saturday, April 15, 2017
To Abraham Lincoln: Poem Celebrating the Emancipation Proclamation • National Poetry Month
April 16 is Emancipation Day in the District of Columbia. Here is a poem celebrating the Emancipation Proclamation sent to Abraham Lincoln by Barry Gray, courtesy of the Library of Congress.
To Abraham Lincoln:
Poem Celebrating the Emancipation Proclamation
Not often unto mortal is it given —
Whate'er his worldy rank or state may be —
The power, sustained by principle and truth,
To set, as Lincoln did, a people free.
He was ordained to do this Christlike deed,
To snap the bonds of slavery apart,
To break the chains which held the negro down,
And draw the iron from his bleeding heart.
This Proclamation, stamped with his strong will,
This writ of Freedom, sealed by his firm hand,
This last, great act, Emancipation's prayer,
Freeing all bonds men living in the land,
Will cause Humanity throughout the world,
To bless and honor Abraham Lincoln's name,
And, more than marble fane or statue could,
Will crown his memory with enduring fame.
by Barry Gray
see the handwritten poem here