Verse > Anthologies > Ralph Waldo Emerson, ed. > Parnassus: An Anthology of Poetry
Ralph Waldo Emerson, comp. (1803–1882).  Parnassus: An Anthology of Poetry.  1880.
From Lines on Leaving Europe
By Nathaniel Parker Willis (1806–1867)
BRIGHT flag at yonder tapering mast,
  Fling out your field of azure blue;
Let star and stripe be westward cast,
  And point as Freedom’s eagle flew!
Strain home! O lithe and quivering spars!        5
Point home, my country’s flag of stars!
*        *        *        *        *
My mother, in thy prayer to-night
  There come new words and warmer tears;
On long, long darkness breaks the light,
  Comes home the loved, the lost for years.        10
Sleep safe, O wave-worn mariner!
  Fear not to-night, or storm or sea:
The ear of Heaven bends low to her!
  He comes to shore who sails with me.
The wind-tossed spider needs no token        15
  How stands the tree when lightnings blaze;
And, by a thread from heaven unbroken,
  I know my mother lives and prays.

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