Nonfiction > E.C. Stedman & E.M. Hutchinson, eds. > A Library of American Literature > 1765–1787
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Stedman and Hutchinson, comps.  A Library of American Literature:
An Anthology in Eleven Volumes.  1891.
Vol. III: Literature of the Revolutionary Period, 1765–1787
 
Democracy
By Jonathan Odell (1737–1818)
 
[Born in Newark, N. J., 1737. Died at Fredericton, N. B., 1818. “The American Times.” From “The Loyalist Poetry of the Revolution.” 1857.]

BLESS me! what formidable figure ’s this
That interrupts my words with saucy hiss?
She seems at least a woman by her face,
With harlot smiles adorned and winning grace.
A glittering gorget on her breast she wears;        5
The shining silver two inscriptions bears:
“Servant of Servants,” in a laurel wreath,
But “Lord of Lords” is written underneath.
A flowing robe, that reaches to her heels,
From sight the foulness of her shape conceals,        10
She holds with poisoned darts a quiver stored,
Circean potions, and a flaming sword.
This is Democracy—the case is plain;
See comes attended by a motley train:
Addresses to the people some unfold;        15
Rods, scourges, fetters, axes, others hold;
The sorceress waves her magic wand about,
And models at her will the rabble rout;
Here Violence puts on a close disguise
And Public Spirit’s character belies.        20
The dress of Policy see Cunning steal,
And Persecution wear the coat of Zeal;
Hypocrisy Religion’s garb assume,
Fraud Virtue strip, and figure in her room;
With other changes tedious to relate,        25
All emblematic of our present state.
She calls the nations—Lo! in crowds they sup
Intoxication from her golden cup.
Joy to my heart, and pleasure to my eye,
A chosen phalanx her attempts defy:        30
In rage she rises and her arrows throws;
O all ye saints and angels interpose!
 
 
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