Independence Day

Nancy Byrd Turner

He played by the river when he was young.
He raced with rabbits along the hills,
He fished for minnows, and climbed and swung,
And hooted back at the whippoorwills.
Stronger and slender, and tall he grew--
And then, one morning, the bugles blew.

Over the hills the summons came,
Over the rivers shining rim.
He said that the bugle called his name,
He knew his country needed him,
And he answered, Coming! and marched away
For many a night and many a day.

Perhaps when the marches were hot and long
He'd think of the river flowing by
Or, camping under the winter sky,
Would hear the whippoorwills far-off song.
Working or playing, in peace or strife,
He loved America all his life!
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