The low clown out of the prairies, the ape-buffoon,
The small-town lawyer, the crude small-time politician,
State-character but comparative failure at forty
In spite of ambition enough for twenty Caesars,
Honesty rare as a man without self-pity,
Kindness as large and plain as a prairie wind,
And a self-confidence like an iron-bar:
This Lincoln, President now by the grace of luck,
Disunion, politics, Douglas and a few speeches
Which make the monumental booming of Webster
Sound empty as the belly of a burst drum.
Stephen Vincent Benet, John Brown’s Body
Something for the weekend. Lincoln and Liberty Too, the most stirring campaign song in American history, sung by Bobby Horton who has waged a one man crusade to bring Civil War music to modern audiences. Mr. Lincoln’s birthday is on Monday which this year coincides with the state holiday in Illinois. I always close down the law mines on that day. Lincoln used to say that Henry Clay was his ideal of a statesman and for me Abraham Lincoln has always filled that role. Presidents come and Presidents go, but Washington and Lincoln remain, the fixed stars of the better angels of our natures.