Ah, what loyal citizen of California doesn’t remember singing the state song, I Love You, California, every morning. Or was it saying the Pledge…my memory’s hazy.

The reason I bring up state songs is not to bring up the ill-fated campaign to make “Born to Run” the New Jersey state song (this town rips the bones from your back; it’s a death trap, it’s a suicide rap; we’ve gotta get out while we’re young.) but rather to point out that the state I currently work in (but do reside in; I’m taxed but not represented, myself) has its own state song, Maryland, My Maryland! Astounding, jaw-droppingly “war-of-Northern-aggression”-style lyrics below the fold.

The despot’s heel is on thy shore, Maryland!
His torch is at thy temple door, Maryland!
Avenge the patriotic gore
That flecked the streets of Baltimore,
And be the battle queen of yore,
Maryland! My Maryland!

I see the blush upon thy cheek,Maryland!
For thou wast ever bravely meek, Maryland!
But lo! there surges forth a shriek,
From hill to hill, from creek to creek,
Potomac calls to Chesapeake,
Maryland! My Maryland!

Thou wilt not yield the Vandal toll, Maryland!
Thou wilt not crook to his control, Maryland!
Better the fire upon thee roll, Better the shot, the blade, the bowl,
Than crucifixion of the Soul,
Maryland! My Maryland!

I hear the distant thunder-hum, Maryland!
The Old Line bugle, fife, and drum, Maryland!
She is not dead, nor deaf, nor dumb-
Huzza! She spurns the Northern scum!
She breathes! She burns! She’ll come! She’ll come!
Maryland! My Maryland!

This is apparently sung to the music of “O Tannenbaum.” I don’t really see how.