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Pioneers! O Pioneers!



COME, my tan-faced children, Follow well in order, get your weapons ready; Have you your pistols? have you your sharp edged  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!


For we cannot tarry here, We must march my darlings, we must bear the brunt of  
We, the youthful sinewy races, all the rest on us depend,  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!


O you youths, western youths, So impatient, full of action, full of manly pride and  
Plain I see you, western youths, see you tramping with  
 the foremost,  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!


Have the elder races halted? Do they droop and end their lesson, wearied, over there  
 beyond the seas?
We take up the task eternal, and the burden, and the  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!
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All the past we leave behind; We debouch upon a newer, mightier world, varied  
Fresh and strong the world we seize, world of labor and  
 the march,  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!


We detachments steady throwing, Down the edges, through the passes, up the mountains  
Conquering, holding, daring, venturing, as we go, the  
 unknown ways,  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!


We primeval forests felling, We the rivers stemming, vexing we, and piercing deep  
 the mines within;
We the surface broad surveying, and the virgin soil up- 
 Pioneers! O pioneers!


Colorado men are we, From the peaks gigantic, from the great sierras and the  
 high plateaus,
From the mine and from the gully, from the hunting  
 trail we come,  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!


From Nebraska, from Arkansas, Central inland race are we, from Missouri, with the con- 
 tinental blood intervein'd;
All the hands of comrades clasping, all the Southern, all  
 the Northern,  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!
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O resistless, restless race! O beloved race in all! O my breast aches with tender  
 love for all!
O I mourn and yet exult—I am rapt with love for all,  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!


Raise the mighty mother mistress, Waving high the delicate mistress, over all the starry  
 mistress, (bend your heads all,)
Raise the fang'd and warlike mistress, stern, impassive,  
 weapon'd mistress,  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!


See, my children, resolute children, By those swarms upon our rear, we must never yield or  
Ages back in ghostly millions, frowning there behind us  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!


On and on, the compact ranks, With accessions ever waiting, with the places of the  
 dead quickly fill'd,
Through the battle, through defeat, moving yet and  
 never stopping,  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!


O to die advancing on! Are there some of us to droop and die? has the hour  
Then upon the march we fittest die, soon and sure the  
 gap is fill'd,  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!
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All the pulses of the world, Falling in, they beat for us, with the western movement  
Holding single or together, steady moving, to the front,  
 all for us,  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!


Life's involv'd and varied pageants, All the forms and shows, all the workmen at their  
All the seamen and the landsmen, all the masters with  
 their slaves,  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!


All the hapless silent lovers, All the prisoners in the prisons, all the righteous and  
 the wicked,
All the joyous, all the sorrowing, all the living, all the  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!


I too with my soul and body, We, a curious trio, picking, wandering on our way, Through these shores, amid the shadows, with the  
 apparitions pressing,  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!


Lo! the darting bowling orb! Lo! the brother orbs around! all the clustering suns and  
All the dazzling days, all the mystic nights with dreams,  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!
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These are of us, they are with us, All for primal needed work, while the followers there in  
 embryo wait behind,
We to-day's procession heading, we the route for travel  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!


O you daughters of the west! O you young and elder daughters! O you mothers and  
 you wives!
Never must you be divided, in our ranks you move  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!


Minstrels latent on the prairies! (Shrouded bards of other lands! you may sleep—you  
 have done your work;)
Soon I hear you coming warbling, soon you rise and  
 tramp amid us,  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!


Not for delectations sweet; Not the cushion and the slipper, not the peaceful and  
 the studious;
Not the riches safe and palling, not for us the tame en- 
 Pioneers! O pioneers!


Do the feasters gluttonous feast? Do the corpulent sleepers sleep? have they lock'd and  
 bolted doors?
Still be ours the diet hard, and the blanket on the  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!
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Has the night descended? Was the road of late so toilsome? did we stop discour- 
 aged, nodding on our way?
Yet a passing hour I yield you, in your tracks to pause  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!


Till with sound of trumpet, Far, far off the day-break call—hark! how loud and  
 clear I hear it wind;
Swift! to the head of the army!—swift! spring to  
 your places,  
 Pioneers! O pioneers!
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