Women of the Early Harlem Renaissance: African American Women Writers 1900-1922

Foraker and the Twenty-Fifth

Editor's Note

Who helped Columbia win the day
At San Juan Hill and El Carney,
When brave men faltered in dismay?
      The Twenty-fifth.

Who welcomed then, their timely aid,
Since they to charge were not afraid,
But at the foe like demons made?
      Colonel Roosevelt.

And when the glorious deed was done.
The battles fought and victory won,
Who honor gave to her dark sons?
       The Nation.

Who was it played the scurvy trick,
Who gave the thrust with his Big Stick
That turned br'ght day to darkness thick?
       Our President.

Where is the place was struck the blow.
The deadly, fatal, unjust blow
Our soldier boys' proud heads bowed low?
       At Brownsville.

Discharged without honor or proof of guilt
Was this the goal toward which they'd built.
The end for which their blood they'd spilt?
       O, mighty God!

Charged with honor up San Juan Hill:
Discharged without honor at dread Brownsville,
Achieved so grandly — rewarded so ill.
      These patriots.

And did no voice for justice cry,
None dare assail the powers high
That did the grievous wrong — none ? Ay,
      Brave Foraker.

Alone he braved the mighty wrath.
Alone he dared the lightning's path ;
Ha! braver champion no man hath
      Than Foraker.

Defied alone the soldiers' foes.
Himself bared to the cowards' blows;
The price so nobly paid God knows —
      And Foraker.

He suffered in a righteous cause.
Fought to uphold his country's laws.
And won just men's thund'rous applause.
       Great Foraker.

Wherever black men's hearts beat high
For justice, honor, liberty.
Nor name nor deed shall ever die.
      Of gallant J. B. Foraker.

And if a race's steadfast love
A race's loyalty can prove.
No other name is loved above
      The name of Foraker.


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