I have taken the breed of all nations,
Barred no religion or race;
From the highest and lowest of stations
They came—and I found them place.
Powers invisible drew them,
Freedom unborn was their quest,
‘Til my uttermost borderlands knew them—
The least of the word and the best.
They came with the wisdom of sages,
The darkness, the stain and the dirt,
They came with the glory of ages,
And I took them—my hope and my hurt.
I have gathered the breed of all nations,
Drawn from each cast and each clan;
Tried them and proved them and loved them
And made them American.
Made them a nation of Builders,
Fearless and faithful and free,
Entered them, passed them and raised them
To the Master’s Sublime degree.
Theirs is the task of restoring
The Ancient and Honoured Guild—
The work to the Speculative,
The spirit to those who build.
‘Til none shall be less than a Master,
And know but one Ruler above,
Bound by the spirit of justice
And the mortar of brotherly love.
‘Til the house shall belong to the Workman
And the Craft come again to its own;
And this is your task, oh my people!
Through you will the Lost Word be known.
Josephine B. Bowman