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Poems On The Slave Trade - Sonnet VI

Robert Southey 1774 (Bristol) – 1843 (London)

High in the air expos'd the Slave is hung
 To all the birds of Heaven, their living food!
He groans not, tho' awaked by that fierce Sun
 New torturers live to drink their parent blood!
He groans not, tho' the gorging Vulture tear
 The quivering fibre! hither gaze O ye
 Who tore this Man from Peace and Liberty!
Gaze hither ye who weigh with scrupulous care
The right and prudent; for beyond the grave
 There is another world! and call to mind,
 Ere your decrees proclaim to all mankind
Murder is legalized, that there the Slave
Before the Eternal, "thunder-tongued shall plead
"Against the deep damnation of your deed."

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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Robert Southey

Robert Southey was an English poet of the Romantic school, one of the so-called "Lake Poets", and Poet Laureate for 30 years from 1813 to his death in 1843. more…

All Robert Southey poems | Robert Southey Books

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