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Labor Day Poem

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The Song of the Working Children

Grant us but rest, to hide our haggard faces;
The brute evicts our souls for daily bread --
We children of the drear and noisome places,
Of joy and beauty disinherited.


This cruel Nation has worn out, defaced us
Ere childhood's happy playtime should have sped;
As well had fate, with careless blindness, placed us
With savage and benighted tribe instead.


We watch the somber garments, higher growing,
And dream of silk's and satin's wondrous sheen:
Weary we make our exits, many knowing,
But fewer caring what our fate has been.


O men of wealth and power, little fearing,
When all Earth's deeds are done and trumpets blown;
When, stripped of all pretense, for final hearing
Your souls stand bare before the Maker's throne:


When long-loved idols are, fast-broken, falling,
And little's honored that on earth appears:
May God not hear our plaintive voices calling
Down the accusing reaches of the years!
Publisher :- George W. Priest
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