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By Ernest Bruncken

We stand and wait.   Not one of all the leaves

In the fair laurel garland that God weaves

For our brave brothers in the Fatherland

Can reach our brows.   Ah, it is hard to stand

Idly, and watch in soft security

While others battle for humanity,

Against the darkness of the ancient East

Sending once more the Mongol and the Hun

With bloody hands to make their savage feast

Upon the land that ever bore the light

Triumphantly through storms of blackest night

To be the Spirit՚s guide and beacon sign.

We stand and wait.   Yet they do also serve

Who wait as duty bids.   Thus was the lay

Of one who dared not by one foot-step swerve

From the rough trail of right in that far day

When England boasted of a nobler breed,

Before she pawned her soul to sate her greed

And made her bargain with fell Tamerlane!

Bruncken, Ernest. “German-Americans.” The Fatherland 1, no. 22 (January 6, 1915): 15.

Bruncken, Ernest. “German-Americans.” The Fatherland 1, no. 22 (January 6, 1915): 15.


laurel garland

In classical times, a laurel wreath, made with the leaves of the bay tree, was worn on the head to signify victory or honor.

Knowles, Elizabeth. “laurel.” In The Oxford Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. Oxford University Press, 2005. https://www.oxfordreference.com/view/10.1093/acref/9780198609810.001.0001/acref-9780198609810-e-4007.


the Mongol and the Hun

Mongols are members of different Asiatic ethnic groups, today primarily in Mongolia, Russia, and China. The term is used here in a pejorative manner to equate the Russians with savages. Historically, ‘Hun’ signifies a member of a warlike Asiatic nomadic group of people who, under Attila, their king, invaded and ravaged large parts of Europe in the late 4th and 5th centuries. During World War I, the term was used colloquially in a derogatory manner for Germans collectively, a reference to their barbarity in Belgium and France at the start of the war. Here, however, both Mongol and Hun are employed as racial slurs to denote the threat from East Asia and the Russian Empire.

"Hun, n.1 and adj.". OED Online. Oxford University Press, June 2021. https://www.oed.com/view/Entry/89450?rskey=4DzQZY&result=1.



The Mongol (Turkic) conqueror Tamerlane (also known as Timur, 1336–1405) established the Timurid Empire in present–day Afghanistan, Iran, and Central Asia.

“Tamerlane.” In World Encyclopedia. Philip's, 2014. https://www.oxfordreference.com/view/10.1093/acref/9780199546091.001.0001/acref-9780199546091-e-11334.

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