I posted this poem in February 2010. Thought I'd bring it to the front of the room again.
God give us men! A time like this demands
strong minds, great hearts, true faith, and ready hands;
Men whom the lust of office does not kill;
Men whom the spoils of office cannot buy;
Men who possess opinions and a will;
Men who have honor - men who will not lie;
Men who can stand before a demagogue,
And damn his treacherous flatteries without winking!
Tall men, sun-crowned, who live above the fog,
In public duty and in private thinking;
For while the rabble, with their thumb-worn creeds,
Their large professions, and their little deeds,
Mingle in selfish strife, lo! Freedom weeps,
Wrong rules the land, and waiting Justice sleeps.
by Josiah Gilbert Holland
American writer (1819-1881)
This poem is from a popular American literature textbook for high school students, published in 1935 and used through the 1940's.
It isn't read today, I'm sure. After all, it is the work of that dreaded historical figure, the Dead White Male.