Nonfiction > E.C. Stedman & E.M. Hutchinson, eds. > A Library of American Literature > 1861–1889
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Stedman and Hutchinson, comps.  A Library of American Literature:
An Anthology in Eleven Volumes.  1891.
Vols. IX–XI: Literature of the Republic, Part IV., 1861–1889
 
Waikiki
By Rollin Mallory Doggett (1831–1901)
 
[Born in Richville, St. Lawrence Co., N. Y., 1831. Died in San Francisco, Cal., 1901.]

THE COCOA, with its crest of spears,
  Stands sentry ’round the crescent shore,
And algeroba, bent with years,
  Keeps watch beside the lanai door.
The cool winds fan the mango’s cheek,        5
  The mynah flits from tree to tree,
And zephyrs to the roses speak
  Their sweetest words at Waikiki.
 
Like truant children of the deep
  Escaped behind a coral wall,        10
The lisping wavelets laugh and leap,
  Nor heed old ocean’s stern recall.
All day they frolic with the sands,
  Kiss pink-lipped shells in wanton glee,
Make windrows with their patting hands,        15
  And, singing, sleep at Waikiki.
 
The closing curtain of the night
  Is shading down the gold to gray,
And on the reef the flaring light
  Of brown-armed fisher, far away,        20
Dyes red the waves that thunder by
  The sturdy bulwarks of the sea,
And breaking into ripplets, die
  Upon the breast of Waikiki.
 
Now come wild echoes through the air,        25
  And shadow of a rugged face,
With iron limbs and shoulders bare—
  The chieftain of a dusky race
Whose hostile front, with lifted lance,
  And war-prows flecking all the sea,        30
Swept through the palms with bold advance
  Along the shores of Waikiki.
 
And all unchecked in martial course
  By menace or the spear of foe,
The misty columns move in force,        35
  Their chieftain leading as they go,
Up, up Nuuanu’s rocky bed
  Till, looking down through clouds, they see
The beetling front of Diamond Head
  And silver sands of Waikiki.        40
 
On! on! the foe has reached the verge,
  And o’er the Pali’s awful side,
With shout and stroke and battle-surge
  Is poured a shrieking human tide.
Then all is still; the work is done;        45
  And thus the shadows come to me
When twilight clouds, kissed by the sun,
  Have bronzed the shores of Waikiki.
 
And then, with tropic murmurs blent,
  Come distant voices half divine;        50
While mingled with the ylangylang’s scent
  Is breath of sage and mountain pine;
And from Diablo’s vine-clad feet,
  From desert bleak and green Maumee,
Are wafted strains to me as sweet        55
  As e’er were heard at Waikiki.
*        *        *        *        *
O Waikiki! O scene of peace!
  O home of beauty and of dreams!
No haven in the isles of Greece
  Can chord the harp to sweeter themes;        60
For houries haunt the broad lanais,
  While scented zephyrs cool the lea,
And, looking down from sunset skies,
  The angels smile on Waikiki.

  Tributes of Hawaiian Verse. 1882.
 
 
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