Give me the spade and the man that can use it,
A fig for your lord with his soft silken hand
Let the man who has strength never stoop to abuse it;
Give it back to the giver, the land, boys, the land.
There's no bank like the earth to deposit your labor:
The more you deposit the more you shall have.
If there's more than you want, you can give to your neighbor,
And your name shall be dear to the true and the brave.
Give me the spade: 'tis our country's chief glory,
It fashioned the field from the bleak barren moor;
Let us speak to its praise with the ballad and story,
As brightened with labor, not tarnished with gore.
It was not the sword that won our best battle,
Created our commerce, extended our trade,
Gave food to our homes, to our flocks, and our cattle;
But the king of all weapons - the spade, boys, the spade!
Give me the spade; there's a magic about it
That turns the black soil into bright shining gold;
O what would our fathers have done, boys without it,
When the lands lay all bare, and the north winds blew cold?
Where the tall forest stood, and the wild beasts were yelling;
Where stout-hearted woodsmen have shrunk back afraid;
The homestead is raised, and man claims a dwelling;
Then hurrah for our true friend - the spade, boys, the spade!