Verse > Anthologies > The World’s Best Poetry > Vol. VIII. National Spirit
Bliss Carman, et al., eds.  The World’s Best Poetry.
Volume VIII. National Spirit.  1904.
II. Freedom
Freedom of the Mind
William Lloyd Garrison (1805–1879)
Written While in Prison for Denouncing the Domestic Slave-Trade

HIGH walls and huge the body may confine,
  And iron gates obstruct the prisoner’s gaze,
And massive bolts may baffle his design,
  And vigilant keepers watch his devious ways;
But scorns the immortal mind such base control:        5
  No chains can bind it and no cell enclose.
Swifter than light it flies from pole to pole,
  And in a flash from earth to heaven it goes.
It leaps from mount to mount; from vale to vale
  It wanders, plucking honeyed fruits and flowers;        10
It visits home to hear the fireside tale
  And in sweet converse pass the joyous hours;
’T is up before the sun, roaming afar,
And in its watches wearies every star.

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