Verse > Anthologies > Higginson and Bigelow, eds. > American Sonnets
Higginson and Bigelow, comps.  American Sonnets.  1891.
On the Life-Mask of Abraham Lincoln
By Richard Watson Gilder (1844–1909)
THIS bronze doth keep the very form and mold
  Of our great martyr’s face. Yes, this is he:
  That brow all wisdom, all benignity;
  That human, humorous mouth; those cheeks that hold
Like some harsh landscape all the summer’s gold;        5
  That spirit fit for sorrow, as the sea
  For storms to beat on; the lone agony
  Those silent, patient lips too well foretold.
Yes, this is he who ruled a world of men
  As might some prophet of the elder day,—        10
  Brooding above the tempest and the fray
With deep-eyed thought and more than mortal ken.
  A power was his beyond the touch of art
  Or arméd strength: his pure and mighty heart.

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