Verse > Anthologies > Ralph Waldo Emerson, ed. > Parnassus: An Anthology of Poetry
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Ralph Waldo Emerson, comp. (1803–1882).  Parnassus: An Anthology of Poetry.  1880.
 
Ichabod!
By John Greenleaf Whittier (1807–1892)
 
SO fallen! so lost! the light withdrawn
    Which once he wore!
The glory from his gray hairs gone
    Forevermore!
 
Revile him not,—the tempter hath        5
    A snare for all;
And pitying tears, not scorn and wrath,
    Befit his fall!
 
Oh! dumb be passion, stormy rage,
    When he who might        10
Have lighted up and led his age,
    Falls back in night.
 
Scorn! would the angels laugh, to mark
    A bright soul driven,
Fiend-goaded, down the endless dark,        15
    From hope and heaven!
 
Let not the land, once proud of him,
    Insult him now,
Nor brand with deeper shame his dim
    Dishonored brow.        20
 
But let its humbled sons, instead,
    From sea to lake,
Along lament, as for the dead,
    In sadness make.
 
Of all we loved and honored, nought        25
    Save power remains,—
A fallen angel’s pride of thought,
    Still strong in chains.
 
All else is gone; from those great eyes
    The soul has fled:        30
When faith is lost, when honor dies,
    The man is dead!
 
Then pay the reverence of old days
    To his dead fame;
Walk backward, with averted gaze,        35
    And hide the shame!
 
 
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