.ks. . . the Brotherhood

INDEX
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WHAT MAKES A MASON

By George H. Free

What makes you a Mason, O brother of mine?

It isnít the dueguard, nor is it the sign,

It isnít the jewel which hangs on your breast,

It isnít the apron in which you are dressed,

It isnít the step, nor token, nor grip.

Nor lectures that fluently flow from the lip,

Nor yet the possession of that mystic word

On five points of fellowship duly conferred.

Though these are essential, desirable, and fine,

They donít make a Mason, O brother of mine.

 

That you to your sworn obligation are true Ė

ĎTis that, brother min, makes a Mason of you,

Secure in your heart you must safeguard your trust,

With your lodge and with brother be honest and just,

Assist the deserving who cry in their need,

Be chaste in your thought, in your word and your deed,

Support him who falters, with hope banish fear,

And whisper advice in an erring oneís ear.

Then will the Great Lights on you brightly shine,

And youíll be a Mason, O brother of mine.

 

Your use of lifeís hours by the gauge you must try,

The gavel to vices with courage apply;

Your walk must be upright, as shown by the plumb,

On the level, to bourn whence no travelers come;

The Book of your faith be the rule and the guide,

The compasses your passion shut safely inside;

The stone which the Architect placed in your care

Must pass the strict test of His unerring square,

And then you will meet with approval divine,

And youíll be a Mason, O brother of mine.

 

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The Mystic Art

by Bro. Sir Edward Bulwer-Lytton

The world may rail at Masonry,
And scoff at Square and Line,
We'll follow with complacency
The Master's great Design.

A King can make a gartered Knight,
And breathe away another,
But he, with all his skill and might,
Can never make a Brother.

This power alone, thou Mystic Art,
Freemasonry, is thine;
The power to tame the savage heart
With brother-love divine!

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A Destiny

by Bro. Edwin Markham

Where is a destiny that makes us Brothers;
None goes his way alone;
All that we send into the lives of others
Come back to our own.

I care not what his temple or creeds,
One thing hold firm and fast-
That into his fateful heap of days and deeds
The soul of man is cast.

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A Real Mason

By Bro. Frank F. Baer

My Brother, Masonry means more
Than just to wear a pin,
Or carrying a dues receipt
So the Lodge will let you in.
You wear an emblem on your coat,
And on your hand a ring.
But, if you're not sincere at heart,
This doesn't mean a thing.
It's just an outward sign to show
The world that you belong
To this Fraternal Brotherhood
That teaches right from wrong.
What really counts lies buried deep
Within the human breast;
Masonic teaching brings it out
And puts it to the test.
If you can do outside the Lodge
The things you learn within,
Be just and upright to yourself
And to your fellow men;
Console a brother when he's sick,
Or help him when in need.
Without a thought of a reward
For any act or deed;
Conduct yourself in such a way
The world without can see
None but the best can meet the test
Laid down by Masonry;
Respect and live up to your trust
And do the best you can;
Then you can tell the world you are
A Mason and a Man!

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Brotherhood

by Bro. Edwin Markham

The crest and crowning of all good,
Life's final star, is Brotherhood;
For it will bring again to earth
Her long-lost Poesy and Mirth;
Will send new light on every face,
A kingly power upon the race.
And till it comes, we men are slaves,
And travel downward to the dust of graves.

Come, clear the way, then, clear the way:
Blind creeds and kings have had their day.
Break the dead branches from the path:
Our hope is in the aftermath-
Our hope is in heroic men,
Star-led to build the world again.
To this event the ages ran:
Make way for Brotherhood- make way for Man!

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Our Cabletow

by Bro. George B. Staff

Sometimes we hardly know its there,
Our guiding cabletow;
If we go down the paths of right,
Its hold we never know;
But if we start the way that's wrong,
It has a sudden way that's strong,
And makes us heed its strength to lead
Down paths we ought to go.

And yet how good a thing to feel,
How fine a thing to know,
Then when the baser actions seek
To wreck and overthrow,
When worldly appetites deprave,
Or lower passions would enslave,
We can feel, like gripping steel,
Our guiding cabletow.

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What Came You Here To Do?

author unknown

Tell me now, my Brother,
What came you here to do?
When you joined our mystic circle,
Had you a purpose in your heart
To be of service to your fellow man
And perform your allotted part,
Or came you out of curiosity
Or motive personal in view?
Tell me, Brother of the square
What came you here to do?
Have you studied well the meaning
Of the symbols on our chart?
And learned to subdue your passions
And make improvements in your art?
Do you uphold the trusts
On which we firmly stand,
Teaching the fatherhood of God
And the brotherhood of man?
Have you willingly aided the brother
When life surges were fierce and wild?
Have you offered cheer and comfort
To the Mason's wife, widow and child?
If you have done so, my brother,
You are a Mason good and true,
And can give a correct answer to
"What came you here to do?"

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"Do You Just Belong?"

Author Unknown

Are you an active member
the kind that would be missed
or are you just contented
that your name is on the list?

Do you attend the meetings
and mingle with the flock
or do you stay at home
and criticize and knock?

Do you take an active part
to help the work along
are you satisfied to be
the kind that "JUST BELONG"?

Do you ever go and visit
a member that is sick
or leave the work to a few
and talk about the clique?

Think this over, member,
you know right from wrong
are you an active member
or do you "JUST BELONG"?

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The Master Mason

By Rev. Brother Durward O. (Dutch)

When kings and potentates oppress the souls of men,
And men's toil brings no bounty or reward within,
Man's heart within his breast beats to be free
To experience his rights guaranteed by his deity.

Noble men of passion for the God-given liberty
Commit all that they have received most willingly.
Soldiers, clad in coats of red, rise up to pillage and burn,
Making men's hearts, for freedom, forever to yearn.

Pleading words of reason, most eloquently written,
Fell on deaf ears, and their authors were smitten.
Every word and every deed issued by noble men
Only served to increase their perils way back then.

A loud cry went up and a shot was heard;
Man's quest of liberty would not be deterred.
Liberty would be born, not of noble birth,
But by sweat, tears and blood of great worth.

Who were these great and gallant men of old
Whose story has seldom completely been told?
Farmer, clergy, lawyer, merchant, and judge,
Committed to the way they would trudge.

Teachers, doctors, and a writer of words
Would put together the document to be heard.
Workers of iron, printers, soldiers, and engineers
Set aside their wealth, their goals and fears.

From their gallant veins, their blood did pour,
Though man's quest for liberty would ne'er be o'er.
Who were these men of such significant worth?
Forty-seven of domestic and nine of foreign birth.

At what point did these men find common light
To shield the soul against the bitter night?
To what charge would their gallant souls hasten?
It was the God-given light of the Master mason.

Still, many are there who would defame this rite,
Expecting them to withdraw silently into the night.
But their work has never been for wealth of fame,
Nor for the beautiful words of earthly acclaim.

These are the ones upon whom you can depend,
To rise up against oppression and liberty to defend.
Faithful to freedom's labor with every breath
Until, in God's holy time, there noble eyes close in death.

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Light

This piece was submitted by Brother Gret Prouse of Ontario, Canada and is a copy of a poem that was written on December 27, 1858 by their first Grand Master Most Worshipful Brother William Mercer Wilson and is recorded history in the Archives of Norfolk Lodge No. 10 of Norwich, Ontario, Canada .

"Let there be light." Jehovah said,
And primal darkness heard and fled;
Then, as the waters from the land;
He parted with almighty hand;
Light ridged the mountain chain with gold;
Light through the vales in glory rolled;
Light silvered ocean, lake and stream;
Light made the pall-like vapors gleam;
Light shone the forest vistas through;
Light gave the sky it's burning blue;
Light fell in life-awakening showers;
On torpid leaves and sleeping flowers;
And all the universe waxed bright
Robed in it's makers effluence-light.
There is a darkness of the mind;
As thick as dark, as undefined;
Ere God had said, " Let there be light."
But as creations morning burst;
On chaos, and the gloom dispersed;
So does the " Day star from on high."
Light to the darkened soul supply;
As that which wrapped the world in night;
So does God's grace, that ray divine;
On the beseeching sinner shine;
Dispelling from the soul despair;
And shedding floods of glory there;
Oh, when there's doubt and gloom within;
Black fruits of unrepented sin;
Search thou this book, and searching pray;
So shall thy sin be washed away;
So shall a beam illuminate thy night;
From him who said, " Let there be light."

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Let There Be Light!

By Brother Cummings (from The Voice of Masonry, 1894)

Brother, kneel before the altar,
In silence grave.
Show no weakness. Do not falter
Like Cowan knave.
Honest brethren stand around you,
With heart and hand,
Ready to encourage, aid you,
A noble band.
Here you need not fear deception --
All are true --
Every brother here assembled
Knelt like you.
With throbbing hearts they silent listen
To your voice,
As you tell in earnest whisper,
Your free choice.
Gently loose the new made brother
From his cord,
He is bound by stronger fetters,
On God's Word.
Hearken to the Master's language:
"Pray for Light,"
Responsive voices chant the echo:
"Let there be Light."
Welcome, brother, to our household,
You are Free;
May it ever prove a blessing
Unto thee.

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Are You A Man?

By W. R. Shields

I do not ask, my friend, if you
Were born a Gentile or a Jew,
A Buddhist, or Mohammedan:
I only ask, are you a man?

It matters not, my friend, to me
If you are black as black can be,
Or colored red, or brown, or tan:
I ask but this, are you a man?

I care not, brother, whence you came,
Nor do I seek to know your name,
Your race, religion, creed or clan:
I want to know if you're a man.

I care not if you're homely quite,
Or handsome as an angle bright,
If you, throughout your little span,
Have only shown yourself a man.

I think that most men think like that:
They hate a weakling, loathe a rat;
They've always liked, since time began,
One who is first and last a man.

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The Five Points Symbolism

By Brother N. A. McAulay (From The Builder, Anamosa, Iowa, October, 1916)

Foot to foot, that we may go,
Where our help we can bestow;
Pointing out the better way,
Lest our brothers go astray.
Thus our steps should always lead
To the souls that are in need.

Knee to knee, that we may share
Every brother's needs in prayer:
Giving all his wants a place,
When we seek the throne of grace.
In our thoughts from day to day
For each other we should pray.

Breast to breast, to there conceal,
What our lips must not reveal;
When a brother does confide,
We must by his will abide.
Mason's secrets to us known,
We must cherish as our own.

Hand to back, our love to show
To the brother, bending low:
Underneath a load of care,
Which we may and ought to share.
That the weak may always stand,
Let us lend a helping hand.

Cheek to cheek, or mouth to ear,
That our lips may whisper cheer,
To our brother in distress:
Whom our words can aid and bless.
Warn him if he fails to see,
Dangers that are known to thee.

Foot to foot, and knee to knee,
Breast to breast, as brothers we:
Hand to back and mouth to ear,
Then that mystic word we hear
Which we otherwise conceal,
But on these five points reveal.

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Secretary's Note

Courtesy of Newport Masonic Temple, 112 E. Market Street, Wilmington, DE 19804

Forget the hasty, unkind word:
Forget the slander you have heard;
Forget the quarrel and the cause;
Forget the whole affair, because,
Forgetting is the only way.
Forget the storm of yesterday;
Forget the knocker, and the squeak;
Forget the bad day of the week.
Forget you're not a millionaire;
Forget the gray streaks in your hair;
Forget to even get the blues -
But don't forget
To Pay Your Dues!

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We are Two Brothers

By H. L. Haywood

Give me your hand;
You are rich; I am poor;
Your wealth is your power, and by it you tread
A wide open path; where for me is a door
That is locked; and before it are worry and dread.
We are sundered, are we,
As two men can be
But we are two brothers in Freemasonry
So give me your hand.

Give me your hand;
You are great; I'm unknown;
You travel with a permanent fame;
I go on a way unlauded, alone,
With hardly a man to hear of my name:
We are sundered, are we,
As two men can be
But we are two brothers in Freemasonry
So give me your hand.

Give me your hand;
You are old; I am young;
The years in your heart their wisdom Last Night I Knelt Where Hiram Knelthave sown;
But knowledge speaks not by my faltering tongue,
And small in the wisdom I claim as my own:
We are sundered, are we,
As two men can be
But we are two brothers in Freemasonry
So give me your hand.

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What Came We Here To Do?

By J. M. Jenkins and published in "Brotherhood" in January, 1920.

Foot to foot, no matter where,
Though far beyond my destined road,
If Brother needs a Brother's care,
On foot I'll go and share his load.

Knee to knee, no selfish prayer
Shall ever from my lips ascend,
For all who act upon the square,
At least, henceforth, my knee shall bend.

Breast to breast, and this I swear,
A Brother's secrets here shall sleep,
If told to me upon the square,
Save those I am not bound to keep.

Hand to back, Oh type of love!
Fit emblem to adorn the skies,
Be this our task below, above
To help poor falling mortals rise.

Cheek to cheek, or mouth to ear,
"We all like sheep have gone astray,"
May we good counsel give and bear,
'Til each shall find the better way.

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Freemason's March

The words of this song were first printed in Watt's "Musical Miscellany," (Volume 3), 1730, under the title "The Freemason's Health." It appears in many eighteenth century song collections, the tune most commonly used appearing for the first time in "Pills to Purge Melancholy," (Volume 2), 1719. It was popular well into the nineteenth century. (From "The Builder")

Come, let us prepare,
We brothers that are
Met together on merry Occasion;
Let us drink, laugh and sing,
Our Wine has a Spring,
'Tis a Health to an Accepted Mason.

The World is in Pain
Our Secret to gain,
But still let them wonder and gaze on;
Till they're shown the Light
They'll ne'er know the right
Word or Sign of an Accepted Mason.

'Tis This and 'tis That,
They cannot tell what,
Why so many great Men in the Nation
Should Aprons put on,
To make themselves one
With a Free or an Accepted Mason.

Great Kings, Dukes and Lords,
Have laid by their Swords,
This our Myst'ry to put a good Grace on,
And ne'er been asham'd
To hear themselves nam'd
With a Free or an Accepted Mason.

Antiquity's Pride
We have on our side,
It makes a Man Just in his Station;
There's naught but what's Good
To be understood
By a Free or an Accepted Mason.

Then Join Hand in Hand,
T'ach other firm stand,
Let's be merry, and put a bright Face on;
What Mortal can boast
So noble a Toast,
As a Free or an Accepted Mason.

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A MASONIC SMILE

SMILING is infectious,
You can catch it like the flu,
When someone SMILED at me today,
I started SMILING too.

As I passed around the,
Altar and a Brother saw my grin,
When he SMILED,
I realized that I'd passed it on to him.

I thought about that little smile,
Then realized its true worth,
A single SMILE just like mine,
Could travel around the earth
.

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