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Arise, American!

George Parsons Lathrop 1851 (Honolulu) – 1898 (New York)



The soul of a nation awaking, -
High visions of daybreak I saw,
And the stir of a state, the forsaking
Of sin, and the worship of law.

O pine-tree, shout! And hoarser
Rush, river, unto the sea,
Foam-fettered and sun-flushed, a courser
That feels the prairie, free!

Our birth-star beckons to trial
All faith of the far-fled years,
Ere scorn was our share, and denial,
Or laughter for patriot's tears.

And lo, Faith comes forth the finer
From trampled thickets of fire,
And the orient opens diviner
Before her; the heaven lifts higher.

O deep, sweet eyes, and severer
Than steel! he knoweth who comes,
Thy hero: bend thine eyes nearer!
Now wilder than battle-drums

Thy glance in his blood is stirring!
His heart is alive like the main
When the roweled winds are spurring,
And the broad tides shoreward strain.

O hero, art thou among us?
O helper, hidest thou still?
Why hath he no anthem sung us,
Why waiteth, nor worketh our will?

For still a smirk or a favor
Can hide the face of the false;
And the old-time Faith seeks braver
Upholders, and sacreder walls.

Yea, cunning is Christian evil,
And subtle the conscience' snare;
But virtue's volcanic upheaval
Shall cast fine device to the air!

Too long has the land's soul slumbered,
And triumph bred dangerous ease, -
Our victories all unnumbered,
Our feet on the down-bowed seas.

Come, then, simple and stalwart
Life of the earlier days!
Come! Far better than all were it -
Our precepts, our prayers, and our lays -

That the heart of the people should tremble
Accord to some mighty one's voice,
The helpless atoms assemble
In music, their valor to poise.

Come to us, mountain-dweller,
Leader, wherever thou art,
Skilled from thy cradle, a queller
Of serpents, and sound to the heart!

Modest, and mighty, and tender,
Man of an iron mold,
Learned or unlearned, our defender,
American-souled!
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Submitted on August 03, 2020

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Quick analysis:

Scheme ABAB CXCC DXDX CCCC CECE AFAF GHGH CXCX DCDC IJIJ IKIK DXDX CICI CICI
Closest metre Iambic tetrameter
Characters 1,821
Words 334
Stanzas 14
Stanza Lengths 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4, 4

George Parsons Lathrop

George Parsons Lathrop was an American poet, novelist, and newspaper editor. He married Nathaniel Hawthorne's daughter, Rose Hawthorne. more…

All George Parsons Lathrop poems | George Parsons Lathrop Books

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    "Arise, American!" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 31 Jan. 2023. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/55375/arise%2C-american%21>.

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