I am not a very patriotic person. Love of country does not move me to passion the way it does some people.
However, I love The Star Spangled Banner. I love the story behind it, and I love the words. Especially the fourth verse. In honor of Memorial Day, I thought I’d talk about it today.
This is one patriotic thing I am passionate about. I think all Americans should know the Star Spangled Banner, and I think they should all at least be aware that there are four verses. The first alone barely begins to tell the story. It’s not until the second verse that the author answers his own question: “Oh, say does that star-spangled banner yet wave/O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?” The third verse praises those who defended that flag, and the fourth, well, it deserves to be written out, although it can’t really be properly understood without having heard the rest:
O! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved home and the war’s desolation.
Blest with vict’ry and peace, may the Heav’n rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation!
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: “In God is our trust;”
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave!
Give it a listen and pay attention. It’s really a beautiful song.