Analysis of A Farewell To Agassiz

Oliver Wendell Holmes 1841 ( Boston, Massachusetts, United States) – 1935 ( Washington, D.C., )

How the mountains talked together,
Looking down upon the weather,
When they heard our friend had planned his
Little trip among the Andes!
How they'll bare their snowy scalps
To the climber of the Alps
When the cry goes through their passes,
"Here comes the great Agassiz!"
"Yes, I'm tall," says Chimborazo,
"But I wait for him to say so, -
That's the only thing that lacks, - he
Must see me, Cotopaxi!"
"Ay! ay!" the fire-peak thunders,
"And he must view my wonders!
I'm but a lonely crater
Till I have him for spectator!"
The mountain hearts are yearning,
The lava-torches burning,
The rivers bend to meet him,
The forests bow to greet him,
It thrills the spinal column
Of fossil fishes solemn,
And glaciers crawl the faster
To the feet of their old master!
Heaven keep him well and hearty,
Both him and all his party!
From the sun that broils and smites,
From the centipede that bites,
From the hail-storm and the thunder,
From the vampire and the condor,
From the gust upon the river,
From the sudden earthquake shiver,
From the trip of mule or donkey,
From the midnight howling monkey,
From the stroke of knife or dagger,
From the puma and the jaguar,
From the horrid boa-constrictor
That has scared us in the pictur',
From the Indians of the Pampas
Who would dine upon their grampas,
From every beast and vermin
That to think of sets us squirmin',
From every snake that tries on
The traveller his p'ison,
From every pest of Natur',
Likewise the alligator,
And from two things left behind him, -
(Be sure they'll try to find him,)
The tax-bill and assessor, -
Heaven keep the great Professor
May he find, with his apostles,
That the land is full of fossils,
That the waters swarm with fishes
Shaped according to his wishes,
That every pool is fertile
In fancy kinds of turtle,
New birds around him singing,
New insects, never stinging,
With a million novel data
About the articulata,
And facts that strip off all husks
From the history of mollusks.
And when, with loud Te Deum,
He returns to his Museum,
May he find the monstrous reptile
That so long the land has kept ill
By Grant and Sherman throttled,
And by Father Abraham bottled,
(All specked and streaked and mottled
With the scars of murderous battles,
Where he clashed the iron rattles
That gods and men he shook at,)
For all the world to look at.

God bless the great Professor!
And Madam, too, God bless her!
Bless him and all his band,
On the sea and on the land,
Bless them head and heart and hand,
Till their glorious raid is o'er,
And they touch our ransomed shore!
Then the welcome of a nation,
With its shout of exultation,
Shall awake the dumb creation,
And the shapes of buried aeons
Join the living creatures' poeans,
Till the fossil echoes roar;
While the mighty megalosaurus
Leads the palaeozoic chorus, -
God bless the great Professor,
And the land his proud possessor, -
Bless them now and evermore!

Scheme aabxccdbbxebffaagghhiiaaeebxaaaaeeaxaadbxixjaahhaakkdbllggmmnnhixxoookkpp AaqqqarjijbbrbxAar
Poetic Form
Metre 10101010 10101010 111101111 10101010 1111101 1010101 10111110 1101010 11111 11111111 10101111 1111 11010110 0111110 1101010 11111100 0101110 0101010 0101111 0101111 1101010 1101010 0101010 10111110 10111010 1101110 1011101 101011 10110010 10100010 10101010 1010110 10111110 1011010 10111110 1010001 101010010 1111001 101001010 1110111 11001010 1111111 11001111 01001110 1100111 10100 01111011 1111111 0110010 10101010 11111010 10111110 10101110 10101110 11001110 0101110 1101110 111010 10101010 0101 0111111 10100110 011111 10111010 11101010 11101111 1101010 01101010 1101010 101110010 11101010 1101111 1101111 1101010 0101110 110111 1010101 1110101 111001110 0111011 10101010 11111 10101010 0011101 1010101 1010101 10101 10110 1101010 00111010 111010
Closest metre Iambic tetrameter
Characters 2,797
Words 527
Sentences 16
Stanzas 2
Stanza Lengths 73, 18
Lines Amount 91
Letters per line (avg) 25
Words per line (avg) 6
Letters per stanza (avg) 1,122
Words per stanza (avg) 259
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Submitted on August 03, 2020

2:38 min read

Oliver Wendell Holmes

Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. was an American jurist who served as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States from 1902 to 1932, and as Acting Chief Justice of the United States in January–February 1930. more…

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    Who wrote the poem ״Invictus״?
    • A. Sylvia Plath
    • B. Thomas Hardy
    • C. Oscar Wilde
    • D. William Ernest Henley