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THE purpose of this collection is to bring together into one volume for convenient use some of the best poems, speeches, and other selections emphasizing the ideals of patriotism, internationalism, and service, not only to one's own country but to humanity also. It presents the fundamental ideas of liberty and justice which must prevail if ever there is to be harmony among nations and is designed especially to supplement the reading of patriotic stories, martial poems, , and hero tales.
The value of inspirational literature as an aid in developing and strengthening the spirit of patriotism and loyalty is generally recognized and need not be dwelt upon here; for, whatever the new international order, the “ spur of the old bards to mighty deeds” will surely still be needed. One result of the participation of the United States in the great World War has been to develop a keener sense of national pride and a stronger desire for service. There has been a renewed emphasis on the duties and obligations of citizenship and even the boys and girls have shared in various forms of war and relief work. Splendid courage and heroic self-sacrifice have been as conspicuous in the “great adventure” of the twentieth century as they have been in crises of the past. But times of peace also require intelligent and enlightened patriotism and offer just as real opportunities for unselfish service and devotion.
Kipling has truly said,
“God gave all men all earth to love,
But, since our hearts are small,
Beloved over all.”
But "to love one's country above all others is not to depise all others,” and the European war by bringing the United States into closer association with other nations has led to an increased interest in all questions of international relationships. Our American soldiers have“ fought for freedom, not glory; made war that war might cease," and now, as never before, the thoughts of every one are concerned with a possible society of nations, with some method of substituting law for force and preventing in the future such fearful devastation of territory, such wanton destruction of property and of human life as have characterized the years of struggle in Europe since the invasion of Belgium by the German army in 1914. It seems, then, a fitting time to recall the prophetic utterances of those who, in the past, have seen a vision of “ the Parliament of man, the Federation of the world ”; of those who, in the present time, are striving for the attainment of justice and unity among nations.
Naturally, in dwelling upon the barbarities of war, or the blessings of a world-wide peace, the writers have not in all cases distinguished clearly between the righteous and the unrighteous cause of warfare; but it is, we may consider, the unjust and aggressive war which is condemned. “The right is more precious than peace" and, if necessary, in the future as in the past, "we shall fight for the things which we have always carried nearest our hearts” — for liberty and for justice. Nevertheless such a war should not be necessary; it is as Virgil long ago called it an
impious” way of settling difficulties among nations. It must needs be eliminated by the education of the social conscience of all peoples. Complete disarmament on the part of a single nation and non-resistance, whatever the provocation, have been proved impracticable by the experience of the last few years and, therefore, material advocating these principles has not been included in this collection.
The selections used have been drawn from many sources and cover a wide range of time. Modern writers are represented as well as the older standard English and American authors; but no attempt has been made to form an exhaustive compilation. The plan and scope of the volume have necessarily limited the selection to certain classes of material. Copyright restrictions have prevented the inclusion of some recent poems; some selections have been regretfully omitted on account of their length; others are represented by extracts only.
Though not a school reader, it is hoped that the book will be suggestive and helpful to teachers, as well as to social workers and librarians, in meeting the need for patriotic and idealistic literature.
I wish to thank Miss Grace Kerr of Washington, D. C., for assistance in obtaining authoritative texts for some of the poems and I wish also to express my cordial appreciation of the courtesy of the authors and publishers who have so generously permitted me to include selections from their works in this volume.
The compiler is indebted to the following authors, periodicals and publishers for permission to use the selections indicated, all rights in which are in each case reserved by the owner of the copyright. D. Appleton & Company: “Oh Mother of a Mighty Race"
and " Christmas in 1875," by William Cullen Bryant. Miss Katharine Lee Bates: “America the Beautiful." Mr. Henry H. Bennett and The Youth's Companion Com
pany: “ The Flag Goes By." Bobbs-Merrill Company: “ The Flag of our Country” and
" One Country," by Frank L. Stanton, from Comes
One with a Song." Mr. Robert Bridges and The New York Times: “To the
United States of America." Mr. William Briggs: "England and America,” by Charles
Sangster, from " Treasury of Canadian Verse." Oliver Ditson Company: “Festival Hymn," by Dudley
Buck (published with music by the Oliver Ditson
Company). Mr. Austin Dobson: “We that Look On ”; Mr. Dobson and
The Spectator: “When there Is Peace," from “ A Book
man's Budget." Mr. Nathan Haskell Dole: “The Federation of the World,"
from “ The Pilgrims” (privately printed); Mr. Dole and Moffatt, Yard & Company: “The Patriot Hymn," from “ The Building of the Organ;" “ The Vision of
Peace," from “Onward." Doubleday, Page & Company: “America,” “I Hear Amer
ica Singing," "The Ship of Democracy," by Walt
Whitman. Mr. John H. Finley: “Lille, Laon, and St. Dié"; Mr. Fin