Verse > Anthologies > Thomas R. Lounsbury, ed. > Yale Book of American Verse
Thomas R. Lounsbury, ed. (1838–1915). Yale Book of American Verse.  1912.
Richard Hovey. 1864–1900
247. Unmanifest Destiny
TO what new fates, my country, far 
  And unforeseen of foe or friend, 
Beneath what unexpected star, 
  Compelled to what unchosen end, 
Across the sea that knows no beach         5
  The Admiral of Nations guides 
Thy blind obedient keels to reach 
  The harbor where thy future rides! 
The guns that spoke at Lexington 
  Knew not that God was planning then  10
The trumpet word of Jefferson 
  To bugle forth the rights of men. 
To them that wept and cursed Bull Run, 
  What was it but despair and shame? 
Who saw behind the cloud the sun?  15
  Who knew that God was in the flame? 
Had not defeat upon defeat, 
  Disaster on disaster come, 
The slave's emancipated feet 
  Had never marched behind the drum.  20
There is a Hand that bends our deeds 
  To mightier issues than we planned, 
Each son that triumphs, each that bleeds, 
  My country, serves Its dark command. 
I do not know beneath what sky  25
  Nor on what seas shall be thy fate; 
I only know it shall be high, 
  I only know it shall be great. 

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