Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson

(8 December 1832 – 26 April 1910 / Kvikne)

At A Banquet Given To The Deputation Of The Swedish Riksdag To The Coronation, In Trondhjem, July 17 Poem by Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson


You chosen men we welcome here
From brothers near.
We welcome you to Olaf's town
That Norway's greatest mem'ries crown,
Where ancient prowess looking down
With searching gaze,
The question puts to sea and strand:
Are men now in the Northern land
Like yesterday's?

'T is well, if on the battlefield
Our 'Yes' is sealed!
'T is well, if now our strength is steeled
To grasp our fathers' sword and shield
And in life's warfare lift and wield
For God and home!
For us they fought; 't is now our call
To raise for them a temple-hall,
Fair freedom's dome.

List to the Northern spirit o'er
Our sea and shore!
Here once high thoughts in word were freed,
In homely song, in homely deed;
And ever shall the selfsame need
That spirit sing:
Heed not things trivial, foreign, new;
Alone th' eternal, Northern, true
Can harvest bring.

O brother-band, this faith so dear
Has brought us here?
The spirit of the North to free,
Our common toil and prayer shall be,
Those greater days again to see,-
As once before,
Of home and trust a message strong
To send the warring world we long
Forevermore.

Submitted: Wednesday, March 31, 2010

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