Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The Utterances of the Sword

By Robert "Rob" Morris


Come out, come out, thou glittering brand!
Obey a Christian Knight's command!
Inspire a Templar's hand!
Celestial signs, thou sword, reveal
In cut and flash of sacred steel,
As in the ancient Band!
As when, before the Saviour's shrine,
Each Templar breathed his countersign!


Oh, Prince Emmanuel, Son of God,
From this far-off and humble sod,
Once by thy gentle footsteps trod,
Thee, Jesus, we salute!
Omniscient King, behold our Band
As with this emblematic brand,
Our work we execute!
Each movement of the Knightly Sword
Shall tell of Thee, thou Templar's Lord!


Embattled hosts are pressing
Along the serried line,
Their venomed darts distressing
The Guardians of the Shrine.
Support, brave Knights, with dauntless mind!
What though the foemen's banner flaunt!
Little we reck, upon the wind,
Blasphemous word and taunt!


To the ardent Pilgrims journeying from afar,
Warriors enlisted in Jesus' Holy War,
'Neath the Cross the sacred Word,
Speaks the one effulgent Lord.
Purged from slavery and sin,
In Hoc Signo, we come in;
Open, Warder, at the gate,
Wide to admit this conquering Band!
Thou, the King of earthly state,
Thou, the King of Heavenly Land!


But who is this, in humble weeds, with Cross and Cord and Scrip,
This man impetuous, resolved to share our fellowship?
With "pure ablutions" thoroughly washed, with "patience sorely tried,"
Waiting to have instructions from the one unerring Guide!
Welcome the stranger, — give him bread, — his water cruse supply;
Cheer him with comfortable words; his tears of weakness dry;
'Tis written in Heaven's Chancery that they who help the poor
Shall find their deeds remembered when they knock at Heaven's door.
Then cover ye their nakedness, who, poor and friendless, come!
Fling wide your Asylums, Noble Knights, and give the homeless home!
Strike manfully, Brave Heroes, when the defenseless call,
And with your comrades conquering stand, or with your comrades fall.


Speed the spoil, the booty hasten,
Templars charge along the lines!
See the opposing forces shaken,
Victory to us inclines!
Innocent maidens, helpless orphans,
Widows destitute, forlorn,
Will you leave them all to scorn?
By the power of Christ's religion,
Templars charge, nor be forsworn.


Here let us muse awhile on far-off scenes,
Where Templars won their earliest renown;
This very dust of Palestine was once
Bone, sinew, heart of Christian chivalry,
That fell to win Christ's Holy Sepulcher;
O'erborne by arrogant infidels they fought,
All through that summer day, on Hattin's plain,
But when the night came down they slept in death;
Never God's glittering stars looked on such men!
At Acre's siege how strove their matchless Band!
How flew their Beauseant on the morning breeze,
When wall and tower surmounted, in her streets
They sung their hymn, Non Nobis Domine,
And worshiped God, to whom the victory is!
Banished from Palestine, the centuries flew,
And lo, at Rhodes and Malta, in the might
Of the Invincible they held their lines,
And in their island forts kept back the foe,
While nations at their prowess stood amazed!
Honor, infinite honor, to each Knight,
Upon whose lance head gleamed such grand heroic light!


Eloi 'twas said on Cavalry,
Eloi, lama sabachthani,
Why hast thou, Lord, forsaken me?
Oh, when these Templar Knights shall die,
Not this their last despairing cry,
But rather, midst death's thickening gloom,
Exultant at the very tomb,
"Hail, Christ, Emmanuel, we come!”


By the deep booming of the Templar's knell,
By the slow march that endeth with the grave,
By funeral badge, and sign, and sorrowful brow,
We mark a Templar fallen; swords reversed,
And trumpets sounding, let the dead go on!
He that hath fallen is Conqueror, while we,
The battle heat must challenge, and the strife,
Until the Master calls to everlasting life.


When Jesus doth marshal
His ranks in accord,
He blesses each sword
With justice impartial,
With Valor undaunted,
With Mercy adored; —
What Templar can falter
When Christ is his Lord?


Lift up your golden heads, ye gates,
Lift up, ye everlasting doors,
And let the King of Glory pass,
King of the upper world and ours!
How strong and mighty He in war!
The victory He will surely win, —
Lift up your golden heads, ye gates,
And let the King of Glory in!


Our Master, journeying o'er the hill,
Rested in noonday heat,
So we, the servants of His will,
Rest at our Master's feet.
How gracious bends His loving gaze
Upon the faithful Band,
Whose strength and joy and hopes are His,
The expectancy of future bliss,
When we exchange the toils of this,
For rest in heavenly land.


Kneel, in worship at the throne
Where Emmanuel rules alone;
And the service of the /cirque,
By celestial chorus sung,
"Glory in the highest be,
Peace, good will eternally!"


Rejected, — He who came to save,
Despised, — the Lord of all,
Embittered in His very grave
With wormwood and with gall:
A man of sorrows, and acquaint
With grief's most agonizing plaint.


Would we, Sir Knights, be freed from care, —
The storm cloud vanishes in prayer:
One true petition, fervent, deep,
Is, to the soul, refreshing sleep;
Prayer animates the arm and heart;
Prayer points anew the Templar's dart;
And binds his powers in sweet accord
To do the bidding of the Lord.


Perish every sword in rust,
Crumble, emblems, into dust,
Be our very flag accursed,
And our names forgot,
Ere we draw in evil strife, —
Ere we use in evil life,
Ere we haunt where sin is rife,
And the Lord is not!
Templars, thorny was the road
That the Man Of Sorrows trod,
But, returning back to God,
Peace He left, and love:
Follow peace! the way is short,
Cherish love! this life is naught,
And the last great battle fought,
Find The Lord above!


Groaning in Gethsemane, —
Crowned from Jordan's thorny tree, —
Scourged, alas! with Roman lash,
Gory streams from every gash, —
Mocked with purple robe and reed, —
Nailed, and dying, — Master, heed,
And hear the Templars' Prayer!
Now on high-exalted throne,
See Thy Templars marching on!
May we feel Thy presence near,
May we never, never fear!
Though we linger, though we bleed,
Though we falter, Master, heed,
And hear the Templars' Prayer.
While Thy Templars faithful live,
Shield, and arms, and courage give!
When Thy toil-spent Templars die,
Crowned with glorious victory,
In Thy presence, by Thy side,
Us eternal rest provide!
Then, thou omnipresent Lord,
By the utterances of the sword
Grant the Templars' Prayer!


No more the trenchant blade to wield,
No more the helmet and the shield,
The Templar's strife is o'er;
The sepulcher where Christ hath lain,
That holiest place is ours again,
To be bereft no more.
In peace we lay our weapons by,
And chant the hymns of victory.


The earth may reel from trembling pole to pole,
The fiery billows in their fury roll,
But, fixed on Christ, the Templar Host will stand,
And brave the terrors of the burning land: —
Hail and Salute!
Winter may bind the earth in icy chain,
Spring may unloose the laughing streams again;
Summer may heat, and autumn heap the land,
While fixed on Christ the Templar Host will stand: —
Hail and Salute!
The enemies of law may rouse their ire,
And threaten us again with rack and fire,
We laugh to scorn the persecuting hand,
And, fixed on Christ, the Templar Host will stand. —
Hail and Salute!
God speed you, Brothers of Golgotha's Cross!
God keep you from all detriment and loss!
Ever, by gates Celestial be ye fanned,
And, fixed on Christ, your Templar Host shall stand: —
Hail and Salute!

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