Up and Be a Hero

Original Text: 
Alexander McLachlan, Poems and Songs (Toronto: Hunter, Rose, 1874): 40-41. Internet Archive.
1Up my friend, be bold and true,
2There is noble work to do,
3Hear the voice which calls on you,
4    "Up, and be a hero!"
5What, tho' fate has fixed thy lot,
6To the lowly russet cot;
8    Thou mayest be a hero!
9High heroic deeds are done,
10Many a battle's lost or won,
11Without either sword or gun,
12    Up, and be a hero!
13Not to gain a worldly height,
14Not for sensual delight,
15But for very love of right,
16    Up, and be a hero!
17Follow not the worldling's creed,
18Be an honest man indeed,
19God will help thee in thy need,
20    Only be a hero!
21There is seed which must be sown,
22Mighty truths to be made known,
23Tyrannies to be o'erthrown,
24    Up, and be a hero!
25There are hatreds and suspicions,
26There are social inquisitions,
27Worse than ancient superstitions,
28    Strike them like a hero!
29In the mighty fields of thought,
30There are battles to be fought,
31Revolutions to be wrought,
32    Up, and be a hero!
33Bloodless battles to be gained,
34Spirits to be disenchained,
35Holy heights to be attained.
36    Up, and be a hero!
37To the noble soul alone,
38Nature's mystic art is shown,
39God will make His secrets known,
40    Only to the hero!
41If thou only art but true,
42What may not thy spirit do,
43All is possible to you,
44    Only be a hero!

Notes

7] groat: old English coin of small value. Back to Line
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
RPO Edition: 
2011
Rhyme: 
Form: