Home  »  A Library of American Literature  »  The Crown

Stedman and Hutchinson, comps. A Library of American Literature:
An Anthology in Eleven Volumes. 1891.
Vols. IX–XI: Literature of the Republic, Part IV., 1861–1889

The Crown

By Ray Palmer (1808–1887)

[Born in Little Compton, R. I., 1808. Died in Newark, N. J., 1887. From Poetical Works. 1876.]

THE CROWNS of earth are jewelled dust,

Or weights, the wearer’s brow to press;

But Thou, O Christ, dost give the just

A nobler crown of righteousness.

That crown, of Thine own love the seal,

On Thine a gift of love bestowed,

Diviner splendors shall reveal

Than e’er on princely head have glowed.

Ten thousand faithful souls and true

Now wear the crown that wore Thy shame,

That many a wasting anguish knew,

And as through fires to glory came.

We yet must wage the long-drawn strife,

And oft with prayers our groans ascend;

We battle for immortal life,—

Give strength and courage to the end.

Then be it ours to hear Thee say,

When we shall lay our armor down,—

“The faith ye kept! Ye won the day!

Come, take and wear the matchless crown!”