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Fraternity

by William Henry Dawson

Fraternity is that feeling toward mankind—
Without regard to rank, or wealth, or place—
Which makes a brother easy quite to find,
And sees God's image in that brother's face.

Sometimes the image is so badly scarred;
Almost beyond the recognition mark;
Its life by sinfulness so badly marred
That all the good combined is but a spark,

Yet the sweet spirit of fraternity,
Acknowledging the fatherhood of God,
Fails not His likeness in that soul to see,
And lifts it from beneath the chastening rod.

The man who thinks himself without a friend;
Who bitterest dregs from sorrow's cup has drained;
Who'd gladly welcome death if 'twould but end
The hell on earth which sinfulness has gained—

To him fraternity extends its hand
And says "my fellow trav'ler, look above;
Let me assist you on your feet to stand.
You are God's child, and God is love."

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