War and the Muses - Honor the Brave
The Spanish-American War in 1898 lasted only a few months,
yet led to the publication of a number of "instant books." These often weighty tomes (500-750 pages was
common), bore such patriotic titles such as Behind
the Guns with American Heroes, The Story of Our Wonderful Victories, and Reminiscences and Thrilling Stories of the
War. These hastily complied works
included letters from soldiers, excerpts from official reports, articles on
various events by participants or journalists, short essays on the geography,
history, and culture of the Philippines,
Puerto Rico, and Cuba, and much patriotic poetry,
most of it bad.
"Honor the Brave," by the otherwise unknown W.R.
Evans, taken from Story of Our Wonderful
Victories, is typical of much of the poetry.
Honor the Brave
Honor the deeds of heroes done
In battles fought and victories won
By freedom's sons o'er land and sea,
With loud acclaim our greetings be.
Who never faltered at the call,
But bravely answered, one and all –
The call that made dark Cuba free,
And led the way to liberty.
What though in death's eternal sleep,
With foemen brave some silence keep,
Their fame will ever cherished be
While time shall last, and memory.
Then stifle not one note of praise
When you your higher anthems raise
To Him whose blessing did attend,
Who from beginning saw the end.
-W.R. Evans, 1898