Raised from the Dayspring of Grandeur

Reflecting on the day’s sad buzzword, which is so heartbreaking. There are historic reasons for the state of nations. There will be an accounting, where some will be shown to have grandeur and some will be found wanting.

Raised from the Dayspring of Grandeur

They were forged in irons
And steeped in toil
They were clothed in cruelty
And brought gold from the soil

When invaded by Spain
Those with skin of coal
They were called to arms
Despite their own bonds.

They bartered for freedom
one day out of seven
to work their own hand
and buy out their children

They fought off the aggressor
And the Spaniards turned tail
With valor they triumphed
Then were paid with betrayal

They were told to disperse
To melt back into bondage
To dissolve the army
To be again master’s hostage

So they took no trophies
And begged no pay
But raised the saber
And claimed the State.

They framed a constitution
Enshrining their rights
Pristine and unique
In the annals of time

They invited all nations
To come to their ports
To France they offered
To be brothers, in short

In exchange for equality
They would stay with the crown
They were sent a vast army,
To make them stand down.

Napoleon’s thirty thousand
They vanquished again
Where once they had freedom
They would not be enslaved

Again they prevailed
And the generals surrendered
But Toussaint, their Pride!
Was carried away, on the ocean tide.

He would sue for their cause
Haiti and France reunite.
But without hearing his plea
Napoleon denied it.

In a cell he entombed him
Then mislaid the keys.
Of hunger he perished
As they left him to freeze.

A martyr for freedom!
His oblivion intended
Across the broad waters
To his nation dismember.

But the roots of the tree
Which he planted so deep
In its sons and its daughters
Awoke with a shriek.

Now descending to wrath
They unleashed a blood bath
An hundred thousand man army
Miraculously assembled

To proclaim to the world
That their bondage had ended.
Egalitée, liberté libète
Were both seized and defended

They burnt their own legacy
The fruit of their toil
They left nothing to covet
To the thieves on their soil

They left nowhere to hide
But the soot and the ash
O’er that tyrant’s disgrace
They triumphed at last.

Then bound wounds of the broken
With the rod of command
Planted liberty’s flag
Across their own land.

Nations shunned them as lepers
For ideals contagious
The world turned its back
Wiping them from the map!

And so, into their future
With their island as home,
Their banner unfurled,
They sailed alone.

Nurturing their spirit
They toiled resilient
They painted their history
In the colors of synergy.

They had knitted a language
And called it Creole
They sang to their children
Beat the drums with their soul

Yet they harbored a cancer
Bequeathed by their past
There moved in their midst
a vile colorist asp

A leach necromancer
Drained blood from its breast
Eclipsing the grandeur
From which Haiti was cast

Enslaved still,
by her own amalgam
Oppressed yet,
by an elitist language.

The black pupil shone
In its dark cabochon
A Caribbean jewel
held as captive son.

Its luster yet hidden
Amid poverty’s grip
Poised with the phoenix
Like the arrow’s own tip

When the bowels of the Earth
Raised the hand of fate
And with the rod of command
Shook tectonic plates.

Moving its sinews,
It bid Haiti awake
By the rivers of pain
And the innocent slain

To meet the horizon
To seize and lay claim
to their rightful place
On the world’s wide stage.

To fill all of space
In mellifluous hymn
Singing, “We were the first
To have broken our chains

“Before all we proclaimed
That on earth Justice reigned
As in heaven the same.
That all colors are one!

“And though we were betrayed
By the traitors on Earth
We have not lost our faith
Nor made deals for our worth.

“Shunned, used and oppressed
By the nations of Cain,
Though Sacrificial Lamb,
We have prospered and gained.

Our soul is redeemed
Our own hands are clean
Our spirit is unbroken
Our resilience serene

Now the test is the world’s:
For all nations and races,
To redeem their own past
Wipe the greed of their history.

Who of these will atone
For their deeds in the now?
Those who trafficked in treachery
Will they mend their own vow?

By the Rod of Justice
By the voice of the people
Part the goats from the sheep
Clean the chaff from the wheat.

Bind the wounds of the broken
And abolish their suffering.
Cry and fight for the world
And not just your own country

For the Books are unsealed
And the Kingdom is nigh.
Now the meek shall inherit
As decreed from on High.

Say: we fulfilled the command.
Built an Ark with our hands.
Crushed oppression at last
And spread peace in the land.

In this Dayspring of Grandeur
It is stamped on our brow:
“In the family of Man
Those who serve are the free.

And grandeur is shown
By whose love is now spent
On the good of the world
And not on his own.”

Rhea Harmsen
Copyright 2017


About rheaharmsen

Rhea Harmsen is a scientist, novelist and author of Language of the Spirit, a volume of selected poems. She has also released three novels, The Harvest of Reason, Intermarry, and God Created Women. Harmsen was born in a family with a black father and a white mother at a time when interracial marriage was still illegal in some states. Her parents gave her a vision of world citizenship that informs her writing and her lifestyle and has caused her to reject traditional views of race and gender. Harmsen's article "Science in the Hands of Women: Present Barriers, Future Promise" appeared in World Order in 1998 and provides the foundation for the story line for her novel The Harvest of Reason. She co-published the Monroeville Race Unity Forum Bulletin and authored many poems on racial topics, crystallizing the "conversation on race" in the novel Intermarry. Her work with domestic violence survivors in Puerto Rico inspired the novel God Created Women. Harmsen holds a doctorate in Plant Breeding and Plant Genetics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She currently resides in Puerto Rico. Upcomming projects are described in her web page at rheaharmsen.com
This entry was posted in history of nations, national discussion, peace, political debate, race in America, slavery, Uncategorized, unity in diversity and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Raised from the Dayspring of Grandeur

  1. Joyce Harmsen says:

    This is so powerful Rhea as to be expected from you! love you, Joyce

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