Verse > Anthologies > Samuel Kettell, ed. > Specimens of American Poetry
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Samuel Kettell, ed.  Specimens of American Poetry.  1829.
 
The Tamed Eagle
By A. M. Wells
 
HE sat upon his humble perch, nor flew
      At my approach;
      But as I nearer drew,
Looked on me, as I fancied, with reproach,
      And sadness too:        5
 
And something still his native pride proclaim’d,
      Despite his wo;
      Which, when I marked,—ashamed
To see a noble creature brought so low,
      My heart exclaim’d,        10
 
Where is the fire that lit thy fearless eye,
      Child of the storm,
      When from thy home on high,
Yon craggy-breasted rock, I saw thy form
      Cleaving the sky?        15
 
It grieveth me to see thy spirit tamed;
      Gone out the light
      That in thine eye-ball flamed,
When to the midday sun thy steady flight
      Was proudly aimed!        20
 
Like the young dove forsaken, is the look
      Of thy sad eye,
      Who in some lonely nook,
Mourneth upon the willow bough her destiny,
      Beside the brook.        25
 
While somewhat sterner in thy downward gaze
      Doth seem to lower,
      And deep disdain betrays,
As if thou cursed man’s poorly acted power,
      And scorned his praise.        30
 
Oh, let not me insult thy fallen dignity,
      Poor injured bird,
      Gazing with vulgar eye
Upon thy ruin;—for my heart is stirr’d
      To hear thy cry;        35
 
And answereth to thee, as I turn to go,
      It is a stain
      On man!—Thus, even thus low
Be brought the wretch, who could for sordid gain,
      Work thee such wo!        40
 
 
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