May lift the father’s pride he broke
And wipe away his mother’s tears.
To him, the mark for thrifty scorn;
God hath another chance to give,
Sets in his heart a flame new-born
By which his muddied soul may live.
This is the day of the prodigal,
The decent people’s shame and grief,
When he shall make amends for all.
The way to Glory’s bloody and brief.
Clean from his baptism, of blood,
New from the fire he springs again,
In shining raiment white and good,
Beyond the wise, home-keeping man.
Somewhere to-night-no tears be shed!-
With shaking hands they turn the sheet
To find his name among the dead,
Flower of the Army and the Fleet.
They tell, with proud and stricken face,
Of his white boyhood far away-
Who talked of trouble or disgrace?
‘Our splendid son is dead!’ they say.

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