Verse > Anthologies > Hunt and Lee, eds. > The Book of the Sonnet
Hunt and Lee, comps.  The Book of the Sonnet.  1867.
VII. On the Last Failure of Kosciusko
By Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772–1834)
O WHAT a loud and fearful shriek was there,
  As though a thousand souls one death-groan poured!
  Ah me! they saw beneath a hireling’s sword
  Their KOSCIUSKO fall! Through the swart air
(As pauses the tired Cossack’s barbarous yell        5
  Of triumph) on the chill and midnight gale
Rises with frantic burst, or sadder swell,
  The dirge of murdered Hope! while Freedom pale
Bends in such anguish o’er her destined bier,
  As if from eldest time some Spirit meek        10
Had gathered in a mystic urn each tear
  That ever on a patriot’s furrowed cheek
Fit channel found; and she had drained the bowl
In the mere wilfulness and sick despair of soul!

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