Fourth of July

Swami Vivekananda, was moved to compose a poem titled:"To the Fourth of July." He began writing on this day in 1898, and he died exactly four years later, on July 4, 1902. Here is his ode to freedom.

"To The Fourth Of July"
by Swami Vivekananda
Behold, the dark clouds melt away,
    That gathered thick at night, and hung
    So like a gloomy pall above the earth!
    Before thy magic touch, the world
    Awakes. The birds in chorus sing.
    The flowers raise their star-like crowns-
    Dew-set, and wave thee welcome fair.
    The lakes are opening wide in love
    Their hundred thousand lotus-eyes
    To welcome thee, with all their depth.
    All hail to thee, thou Lord of Light!
    A welcome new to thee, today,
    O sun! today thou sheddest LIBERTY!
    Bethink thee how the world did wait,
    And search for thee, through time and clime.
    Some gave up home and love of friends,
    And went in quest of thee, self banished,
    Through dreary oceans, through primeval forests,
    Each step a struggle for their life or death;
    Then came the day when work bore fruit,
    And worship, love, and sacrifice,
    Fulfilled, accepted, and complete.
    Then thou, propitious, rose to shed
    The light of FREEDOM on mankind.
    Move on, O Lord, on thy resistless path!
    Till thy high noon o'erspreads the world.
    Till every land reflects thy light,
    Till men and women, with uplifted head,
    Behold their shackles broken, and
    Know, in springing joy, their life renewed!


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