James M. Whitfield's America and Other Poems


  Table of Contents:
Cover Page
Dedication
Introduction
"America"
"Christmas Hymn"
"Lines on the Death of J. Quincy Adams"
"To Cinque"
"New Year's Hymn"
"To A.H."
"Love"
"How Long"
"The Arch Apostate"
"The Misanthropist"
"A Hymn"
"Yes! strike again that sounding string"
"To -------"
"Prayer of the Oppressed"
"To S.A.T."
"Delusive Hope"
"To M.E.A."
"A Hymn"
"Self-Reliance"
"Ode for the Fourth of July"
"Midnight Musings"
"Ode to Music"
"Stanzas for the First of August"
"The North Star"
(text of all poems)

  Ode for the Fourth of July p1
"Ode for the Fourth of July"
close-up 1 | 2 | 3


ANOTHER year has passed away,
And brings again the glorious day
When Freedom from her slumber woke,
And broke the British tyrantís yoke ---
Unfurled her standard to the air,
In gorgeous beauty, bright and fair ---
Pealed forth the sound of warís alarms,
And called her patriot sons to arms!

They rushed, inspired by Freedomís name,
To fight for liberty and fame;

Ode for the Fourth of July p2 To meet the mercenary band,
And drive them from their native land.
Almighty God! grant us, we pray,
The self-same spirit on this day,
That, through the storm of battle, then
Did actuate those patriot men!

May those great truths which they maintained
Through years of deadly strife and toil,
Be by their children well sustained,
Till slavery ceases on our soil ---
Till every wrong shall be redressed,
And every bondman be set free;
And from the north, south, east and west,
Peans shall rise to Liberty.

May that same God whose aegis led
Our patriot sires on Bunkerís height,
Shed the same blessings on our head,
The heroes of a nobler fight ---
A fight not waged by fire and sword,
And quenched in gore and human blood,

  Ode for the Fourth of July p3 But only by that Sacred Word,
The mandate of Almighty God.

Our cause is Love, our weapon Truth,
Our ally is the living God;
Matron and maiden, sire and youth,
Shall feel the power of his rod.
Prone to the dust, shall Slavery fall,
And all its withering influence die,
While liberty, the boon of all,
Shall swell through earth, and air, and sky.

Introduction Biography Contexts Critical Voices Teaching Approaches Bibliography