By Ed D. Lauritsen


Hear the midnight mobs still hounding,
Hear the gunshots still resounding,
Hear the fist on doors still pounding,
Pioneer, O pioneer.
Smell the smoke of houses burning,
Feel the Mississippi churning,
Taste the tears of grief and yearning,
Pioneer, O pioneer.
Hear the icy night wind screaming,
See your breath in lamplight steaming,
Keep awake! There’s death in dreaming,
Pioneer, O pioneer.
Chip a frozen grave for brother,
Grip the trembling hand of mother,
Live one day, and then another,
Pioneer, O pioneer.
Lash and bend and drag and carry,
Ration every root and berry,
Grit your way across the prairie,
Pioneer, O pioneer.
Climb the mountains, steep and looming,
Hear the crashing boulders booming,
See the oxen straining, fuming,
Pioneer, O pioneer.
Gaze at last with soulful sighing,
See the object of your trying,
Join the thankful singing, crying,
Pioneer, O pioneer.
Tame the desert, bring the waters,
Raise up Zion’s sons and daughters,
Steady them while mammon totters,
Pioneer, O pioneer.
Send your stripling missionaries,
Send them over seas and prairies,
Send them while the Spirit tarries,
Pioneer, O pioneer.
Watch us now from where you’re waiting,
See the millions congregating,
Shout in holy celebrating!
Pioneer, O pioneer.

[illustration] Illustrated by Warren Luch