The Poor Voter On Election Day

To-day, of all the weary year, A king of men am I. To-day, alike are great and small, The nameless and the known; My palace is the people's hall, The ballot-box my throne! The rich is level with the poor, The weak is strong to-day; And sleekest broadcloth counts no more Than homespun frock of gray. To-day let pomp and vain pretence My stubborn right abide; I set a plain man's common sense Against the pedant's pride. The wide world has not wealth to buy The power in my right hand! While there's grief to set redress, Or balance to adjust, Where weighs our living manhood less Than Mammon's vilest dust- While there's a right to need my vote, A wrong to sweep away, Up! clouted knee and ragged coat! A man's a man today!

John Greenleaf Whittier circa 1840