White is for purity, red for valor, blue for justice. Thus the bunting, stripes and stars together, make the flag of our country—loved by all our hearts and upheld by all our hands.
THE SHIP OF STATE
Thou, too, sail on, O ship of State!
Sail on, O Union, strong and great!
Humanity, with all its fears,
With all the hopes of future years,
Is hanging breathless on thy fate.
We know what Master laid thy keel,
What Workman wrought thy ribs of steel,
Who made each mast, and sail, and rope,
What anvils rang, what hammers beat,
In what forge and what a heat
Were shaped the anchors of thy hope!
Fear not each sudden sound and shock,
’Tis of the wave, and not the rock;
’Tis but the flapping of the sail,
And not a rent made by the gale.
In spite of rock and tempest’s roar,
In spite of false lights on the shore,
Sail on, nor fear to breast the sea.
Our hearts, our hopes, are all with thee;
Our hearts, our hopes, our prayers, our tears,
Our faith triumphant o’er our fears,
Are all with thee,—are all with thee.
H. W. Longfellow.
This is a speech, brief, but full of inspiration, and opening the way to all victory. The secret of Napoleon’s career was this,—under all difficulties and discouragements, “Press on.” It solves the problem of all heroes; it is the rule by which to weigh rightly all wonderful successes and triumphal marches to fortune and genius. It should be the motto of all, old and young, high and low, fortunate and unfortunate, so called.
“Press on.” Never despair; never be discouraged, however stormy the heavens, however dark the way; however great the difficulties, and repeated the failures, “Press on.”
If fortune hath played false with thee today, do thou play true for thyself to-morrow. If thy riches have taken wings and left thee, do not weep thy life away; but be up and doing, and retrieve the loss by new energies and action. If an unfortunate bargain has deranged thy business, do not fold thy arms, and give up all as lost; but stir thyself and work the more vigorously.
If those whom thou hast trusted have betrayed thee, do not be discouraged, do not idly weep, but “Press on.” Find others: or, what is better, learn to live within thyself. Let the foolishness of yesterday make thee wise to-day.
Rabbi Meir, the great teacher, sat one Sabbath day in the school of the holy law, and taught the people. The rabbi had two sons, who were youths of great promise and well instructed in the law. On that Sabbath day they both died.
Tenderly their mother bore them to an upper chamber, laid them on her bed, and spread a white sheet over their bodies.