Comes the moment to decide,
In the strife of truth with false-hood,
For the good or evil side;
Some great cause, some great decision,
Offering each the bloom or blight,
And the choice goes by forever,
'Twixt that darkness and that light.
Then to side with truth is noble,
When we share her wretched crust,
Ere her cause bring fame and profit,
And 'tis prosperous to be just;
Then it is the brave man chooses,
While the coward stands aside,
Till the multitude make virtue,
Of the faith they had denied.
Though the cause of evil prosper,
Yet the truth alone is strong:
Though her portion be the scaffold,
And upon the throne be wrong,
AND, BEHIND THE DIM UNKNOWN,
STANDETH GOD WITHIN THE SHADOW,
KEEPING WATCH ABOVE HIS OWN.
--James Russell Lowell