Verse > Anthologies > William McCarty, ed. > The American National Song Book
William McCarty, comp.  The American National Song Book.  1842.
The Trident of Neptune
TO guard the free pathway of his watery domain,
  For ages had Neptune his trident extended;
And nations all swore they the law would maintain,
  Which forbid that its rights should e’er be contended:
But Britain, haughty isle, claiming ocean as her spoil,        5
Set afloat her wing’d castles, determined to despoil;
And the god, at their thunders, with terror inspired,
Presented his sceptre, and in exile retired.
Long he view’d the usurper triumph o’er the expanse,
  As mid its green leaves he sat forlorn and cheerless;        10
While tyranny and rapine o’er its azure waves advance,
  By the streamers of Albion protected and fearless;
When, the solace of his woes, Columbia’s genius rose,
And glory fill’d her eye while it lighten’d on her foes;
For the wand that quells the billows was in her hand borne,        15
Which from the queen of ocean her warlike sons had torn.
“Great Father,” the Goddess of Liberty exclaim’d,
  While the radiance of Heaven on her countenance brighten’d,
“With thy trident thy power undiminish’d is reclaim’d:”
  And his soul spoke its joy in his visage that lighten’d,        20
As the emblem again of his rule on the main,
Through Columbia’s fair hands, he from usurpation gain’d;
And while the immortal affection waked his breast,
He announced to the world his sovereign behest:
“Thy virtues the glory of all nations transcend;        25
  Be thy bliss and thy greatness through ages increasing,
The rights of the world be it thy task to defend,
  And the reverence of empires shall ever be unceasing;
The fierce tempest of war, shall be driven afar
To the deep’s heaving bosom; no more your peace to mar,        30
While Hull’s, Jones’, and Decatur’s fame, cherish’d in song
Shall your annal’s proud page with numerous heroes throng.”

Shakespeare · Bible · Strunk · Anatomy · Nonfiction · Quotations · Reference · Fiction · Poetry
© 1993–2015 · [Top 150] · Subjects · Titles · Authors · World Lit.