Verse > Anthologies > Samuel Kettell, ed. > Specimens of American Poetry
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Samuel Kettell, ed.  Specimens of American Poetry.  1829.
 
The Patriot’s Grave
By Samuel H. Jenks (1789–?)
 
ON the spot where my war-couch stood,
  Where my spring-time of fame was pass’d,
Where the patriot’s prayer, and the hero’s blood
  Pour’d fervently and fast—
 
Where the spirit of glory stole        5
  O’er my earliest and brightest dream,
With the trumpet’s blast and the drum’s rude roll,
  And the falchion’s dazzling gleam—
 
Lay me down on that hallow’d spot—
  Long in peace I may there remain;        10
For the foeman’s standard now waveth not
  On yonder battle-plain.
 
When this weary and struggling soul
  From its bondage of clay hath fled,
Make my humble grave on yon grassy knoll,        15
  ’T is a meet and quiet bed!
 
On its brow there ’s a blasted oak,
  Like its withering branch am I;
Yet though ravens there may be heard to croak,
  Heaven’s softest breeze shall sigh:—        20
 
And, my children, a stream glides there,
  Gently laving its verdant base;—
Of perennial bliss ’t is an emblem fair—
  It shall mark my resting place!
 
Once the proud and the gallant tread        25
  Of the warrior press’d that mound;
But his comrades soon o’er the prostrate dead
  May pour the farewell round.
 
And when cometh my final strife,
  Let me be with my comforter,        30
That the last fond gaze of expiring life
  Be consecrate to her.
 
Then if far, far beyond the grave,
  Be the memory’s employment free,
It shall cherish the look that affection gave,        35
  In all eternity!
 
O! ’t is sweet, when my task is done,
  Thus to witness my banner furl’d:—
When the storm is spent, so the setting sun
  Smiles on a parting world!        40
 
 
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