Lawrence Raid  

by Ellen Patton

A sound of weeping is in the wind,
   A smell of blood upon the air;
Oh, list to the hoof-beats of a horse,
   And bark to a mother's prayer.
The bunch-grass is redder than the rose,
   The wild bee is flying afar;
While up in the sky a bank of cloud
   Seems trying to put out a star.

An avalanche riding to Lawrence-
   The horse and the rider as one;
The earth seems to quiver with anguish,
   And God holds his breath in the sun
The eagle of Freedom is wounded,
   And flieth so heavy and low;
While all of the demons of blackness
   Are blowing their trumpets of woe.

The torch was aflame, and the houses
   Were turning to columns of smoke;
The crack of the rifles was knelling
   The pain of sad hearts that were broke.
Then heroes lay down like the rushes,
   So quietly taking their rest;
With red blood the earth became drunken,
   Shed by martyrs asleep on her breast.

That day Death laughed out her shrillest,
   While devils went mad in their glee
Yet a minor chord in the music
   Was, "Kansas is born to be free."
And Lawrence uprose like the Phoenix,
  No smell of the fire on her gown;
She triumphed, and now is the victor;
We braid and she weareth a crown.


Barrington, F. H.
Kansas Day
(Topeka: Geo. W. Crane & Company. 1892)

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February 23, 1999 / John & Susan Howell / Wichita, Kansas /

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