Verse > Anthologies > Samuel Kettell, ed. > Specimens of American Poetry
Samuel Kettell, ed.  Specimens of American Poetry.  1829.
The War Horse
By Joseph Brown Ladd (1764–1786)
Paraphrase from Job.

  AGAIN the Almighty from the whirlwind broke,
And thus to Job, in stern continuance, spoke:
“Didst thou the horse with strength unequall’d mould,
Whose lofty neck the writhen thunders fold?
And canst thou make the intrepid courser fly,        5
When steely dangers glitter in his eye?
  “See all around him spreads the flamy cloud,
Spurn’d from his nostrils, while he snorts aloud,
Trembling with vigor, how he paws the ground,
And hurls the thunder of his strength around!        10
Behold! he pants for war, and scorning flight,
Collects his strength and rushes to the fight.
  “When clouds of darts a sable horror spread,
And the full quiver rattles o’er his head:
To him no dread the sound of battle bears,        15
The clash of armor and the strife of spears;
But o’er his neck his waving mane reclined,
Spreads to the gale and wantons in the wind:
He spurns the field, fierce, terrible, and strong,
And rolls the earth back as he shoots along.        20
  “Lo! where the strife the distant warriors wage,
The neighing courser snuffs the sanguine rage;
While roaring trumpets and the dire affray
Provoke his laughter on that dreadful day;
More loud he snorts, more terrible he foams,        25
When nearer still the storm of battle comes;
And mingling roars are dreadful on the heath,
In shouts of victory, and groans of death.”

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