Hats Off—The Flag Goes By
(13 January 1898) by Henry Holcomb Bennett
Hats off! Along the street there comes A blare of bugles, a ruffle of drums, A flash of color beneath the sky: Hats off! The flag is passing by! Blue and crimson and white it shines, Over the steel-tipped, ordered lines. Hats off! The colors before us fly; But more than the flag is passing by. Sea-fights and land-fights, grim and great, Fought to make and to save the State: Weary marches and sinking ships; Cheers of victory on dying lips; Days of plenty and years of peace; March of a strong land’s swift increase; Equal justice, right and law, Stately honor and reverend awe; Sign of a nation, great and strong To ward her people from foreign wrong: Pride and glory and honor,—all Live in the colors to stand or fall. Hats off! Along the street there comes A blare of bugles, a ruffle of drums; And loyal hearts are beating high: Hats off! The flag is passing by!