The National Anthem

A Constrained Vision has a post on the National Anthem Project, attempting to teach people the words to our national anthem. Supposedly 61% of American adults don’t know the words. So I thought I would see if I did.

Here is my attempt:

Oh say can you see
by the dawn’s early light
what so proudly we hailed
at the twilight’s last gleaming?
Whose broad stripes and bright stars
through the perilous night
o’er the ramparts we watched
were so gallantly streaming?
And the rockets red glare,
the bombs bursting in air,
gave proof through the night
that our flag was still there.
Oh say does that star-spangled banner
yet wave
o’er the land of the free
and the home of the brave?

For all the words, of all four verses, go here.

I didn’t remember that there were four verses. But if you would like to read the stories behind them, go to Isaac Asimov’s discussion of it.

Being incredibly patriotic, it made me cry. In fact, there are still tears dripping off my chin. (Pause for wiping those away…. Got the ones on my cheeks, too.)

I like the fourth verse, especially in view of where we are as a nation today.

Oh! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved homes and the war’s desolation,
Blest with vict’ry and peace, may the Heav’n – rescued land
Praise the Pow’r that hath made and preserved us a nation.

Then conquer we must, for our cause is just,
And this be our motto–“In God is our trust.”
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.