Friday, June 28, 2013

The Assassination



By Miss Eliza R. Snow, July 1, 1844 


Poetry
For the Times and Seasons
The Assassination of Gen'ls Joseph Smith and Hyrum Smith,
First Presidents of the Church of Latter Day Saints;
Who Were Massacred by a mob in Carthage,
Hancock County, Ill., on the 27th June, 1844;
_____
A. GIVE EAR
    Ye heav'ns attend! Let all the earth give ear!
    Let Gods and seraphs, men and angels hear -
    The worlds on high - the universe shall know
    What awful scenes are acted here below!
 B. BLOOD SO NOBLE/PURE BLOOD ON INNOCENCE
     Had nature's self a heart, her heart would bleed;
     For never, since the Son of God was slain
     Has blood no noble, flow'd from human vein
     As that which now, on God for vengeance calls
     From "freedom's ground" - from Carthage prison walls!
     Oh! Illinois! Thy soil has drank the blood
     Of Prophets martyr'd for the truth of God.
     Once lov'd America! What can atone
     For the pure blood on innocence
, thou'st sown?
  C. WRETCHED MURDERS
      Were all thy streams in teary torents shed
      To mourn the fate of those illustrious dead;
      How vain the tribute, for the noblest worth
      That grace'd thy surface, O degraded Earth!
      Oh wretched murd'rers! fierce for human blood!
      You've slain the prophets of the living God,
      Who've born oppression from their early youth
      To plant on earth, the principles of truth.
   D. OFFERED AS A SACRIFICE
       Shades of our patriotic fathers! Can it be,
       Beneath your blood-stain'd flag of liberty;
       The firm supporters of our country's cause,
       Are butcher'd while submissive to her laws?
       Yes, blameless men, defam'd by hellish lies
       Have thus been offer'd as a sacrifice
       T'appease the ragings of a brutish clan,
       That has defiled the laws of God and man!
       'Twas not for crime or guilt of theirs, they fell -
       Against the laws they never did rebel.
       True to their country, yet her plighted faith
       Has prov'd an instrument of cruel death!
    E. THY PROTECTING CARE
       Where are thy far-famed laws - Columbia! where
       Thy boasted freedom - thy protecting care?
       Is this a land of rights? Stern-FACTS shall say
       If legal justice here maintains its sway,
       The official pow'rs of State are sheer pretence
       When they've exerted in the Saints' defence.
     F. TWO, SO WISE, SO VIRTUOUS, GREAT AND GOOD
         Great men have fall'n and mighty men have died -
         Nations have mourn'd their fav'rites and their pride;
         But TWO, so wise, so virtuous, great and good,
         Before on earth, at once, have never stood
         Since the creation - men whom God ordain'd
         To publish truth where error long had reigned;
         Of whom the world, itself unworthy prov'd:
         It KNEW THEM NOT, but men with hatred mov'd
         And with infernal spirits have combin'd
         Against the best, the noblest of mankind!
    E. UTTER DESTRUCTION
        Oh, persecution! shall thy purple hand
        Spread utter destruction through the land?
        Shall freedom's banner be no more unfurled?
        Has peace indeed, been taken from the world?
     F. THIS AWFUL STROKE
         Thou God of Jacob, in this trying hour
         Help us to trust in thy almighty pow'r;
         Support thy Saints beneath this awful stroke -
         Make bare thine arm to break oppression's yoke.
   D. THY PROPHET
       We mourn thy Prophet, from whose lips have flow'd
       The words of life
, thy spirit has bestow'd -
       A depth of thought, no human art could reach
       From time to time, roll'd in sublimest speech,
       From the celestial fountain, through his mind,
       To purify and elevate mankind:
       The rich intelligence by him brought forth,
       Is like the sun-beam, spreading o'er the earth.
       Now Zion mourns - she mourns an earthly head
       The Prophet and the Patriarch are dead!
  C. WIDOWS' AGONIZING GRAONS
      The blackest deed that men or devils know
      Since Calv'ry's scene, has laid the brothers low!
      One in their life, and one in death - the prov'd
      How strong their friendship - how they truly lov'd:
      True to their mission, until death, they stood,
      Then seal'd their testimony with their blood.
      All hearts with sorrow bleed, and ev'ry eye
      Is bath'd in tears - each bosom heaves a sigh -
      Hart broken widows' agonizing groans
      Are mingled with the helpless orphans' moans!
 B. IN HIS PROMISE
     Ye Saints! be still, and know that God is just -
     With steadfast purpose in his promise trust
     Girded with sackcloth, own his mighty hand,
     And wait his judgments on this guilty land!
     The noble martyrs now have gone to move
     The cause of Zion in the courts above.
_____
A. SLAIN FOR THE WORD OF GOD
    a. "And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the alter,
        the souls of them that were slain for the word of God,
        and for the testimony which they held;
        And they cried with a loud voicesaying,
     b. How long, O Lord, holy and true,
       d. dost thou not judge and
      c. avenge our blood 
on them that dwell on earth?
        e. And white robes were given
         f. unto every one of them;
         f. and it was said unto them,
        e. that they should rest yet for a little season,
       d. until their fellow servants also, and their brethren,
      c. that should be killed as they were,
     b. should be fulfilled."
    a. [Ellipsis]

Rev. 6:--9,10,11.
Nauvoo, July 1, 1844.
_____
Summary:
a. ... give ear
 b. ... blood so noble/pure blood on innocence
  c. ... wretched murders
   d. ... offered as a sacrifice
    e. ... thy protecting care
     f. ... TWO, so wise, so virtuous, great and good
    e. ... utter destruction
   d. ... thy Prophet
  c. ... widows' agonizing graons
 b. ... in his promise
a. ... slain for the word of God

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