James and Mary Ford, eds. Every Day in the Year. 1902.

April 19


By Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803–1882)

  • Sung at the completion of the Concord Monument, April 19, 1836.

  • BY the rude bridge that arched the flood,

    Their flag to April’s breeze unfurled,

    Here once the embattled farmers stood,

    And fired the shot heard round the world.

    The foe long since in silence slept;

    Alike the conqueror silent sleeps;

    And Time the ruined bridge has swept

    Down the dark stream which seaward creeps.

    On this green bank, by this soft stream,

    We set to-day a votive stone;

    That memory may their deed redeem,

    When, like our sires, our sons are gone.

    Spirit, that made those heroes dare

    To die, or leave their children free,

    Bid Time and Nature gently spare

    The shaft we raise to them and thee.