Poems of American history
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PROLOGUE TO JOHN ENDICOTT
His wigwams were burnt by the white man ' s
flame,
And the home of his youth has a stranger
name
His ancestor once was our countryman ' s foe,
And the arrow was plac ' d in the new-strung
bow,
The wild deer ranged through the forest
free,
While we fought with his tribe by the distant
sea.
But the foe never came to the Mohawk ' s
tent.
With his hair untied, and his bow unbent.
And found not the blood of the wild deer
shed.
And the calumet lit and the bear-skin bed.
But sing ye the Death Song, and kindle the
pine.
And bid its broad light like his valor to shine:
Then raise high his pile by our warriors '
heaps.
And tell to his tribe that his murderer sleeps.
ALONZO LEWIS.
OUR COUNTRY
ON primal rocks she wrote her name ;
Her towers were reared on holy graves;
The golden seed that bore her came
Swift-winged with prayer o ' er ocean waves.
The Forest bowed his solemn crest,
And open flung his sylvan doors;
Meek Rivers led the appointed guest
To clasp the wide-embracing shores;
Till, fold by fold, the broidered land
To swell her virgin vestments grew,
While sages, strong in heart and hand,
Her virtue ' s fiery girdle drew.
O Exile of the wrath of kings!
O Pilgrim Ark of Liberty!
The refuge of divinest things,
Their record must abide in thee!
First in the glories of thy front
Let the crown- jewel, Truth, be found;
Thy right hand fling, with generous wont,
Love ' s happy chain to farthest bound!
Let Justice, with the faultless scales,
Hold fast the worship of thy sons;
Thy Commerce spread her shining sails
Where no dark tide of rapine runs!
So link thy ways to those of God,
So follow firm the heavenly laws,
That stars may greet thee, warrior-browed,
And storm-sped angels hail thy cause!
O Lord, the measure of our prayers,
Hope of the world in grief and wrong,
Be thine the tribute of the years.
The gift of Faith, the crown of Song!
JULIA WARD HOWE.
CHAPTER VI
RELIGIOUS PERSECUTIONS IN NEW ENGLAND
The Puritans, who had come to New England
to escape a religious despotism, lost no time in
establishing one of their own. At the first meeting
of the General Council, in the autumn of 1630, it
was agreed that no one should be admitted to
membership in the company who was not a mem
ber of some church approved by it , and a religious
oligarchy was thus established which kept itself
in power for over thirty years.
PROLOGUE
From " John Endicott "
TO-NIGHT we strive to read, as we may best,
This city, like an ancient palimpsest;
And bring to light, upon the blotted page,
The mournful record of an earlier age.
That, pale and half effaced, lies hidden away
Beneath the fresher writing of to-day.
Rise, then, O buried city that hast been;
Rise up, rebuilded in the painted scene,
And let our curious eyes behold once more
The pointed gable and the pent-house door,
The meeting-house with leaden-latticed panes,
The narrow thoroughfares, the crooked lanes !
Rise, too, ye shapes and shadows of the Past,
Rise from your long-forgotten graves at last;
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