Treasure Island

Herman Melville

(1 August 1819 – 28 September 1891 / New York City, New York)

America


I

Where the wings of a sunny Dome expand
I saw a Banner in gladsome air-
Starry, like Berenice's Hair-
Afloat in broadened bravery there;
With undulating long-drawn flow,
As rolled Brazilian billows go
Voluminously o'er the Line.
The Land reposed in peace below;
The children in their glee
Were folded to the exulting heart
Of young Maternity.

II

Later, and it streamed in fight
When tempest mingled with the fray,
And over the spear-point of the shaft
I saw the ambiguous lightning play.
Valor with Valor strove, and died:
Fierce was Despair, and cruel was Pride;
And the lorn Mother speechless stood,
Pale at the fury of her brood.


III

Yet later, and the silk did wind
Her fair cold for;
Little availed the shining shroud,
Though ruddy in hue, to cheer or warm
A watcher looked upon her low, and said-
She sleeps, but sleeps, she is not dead.
But in that sleep contortion showed
The terror of the vision there-
A silent vision unavowed,
Revealing earth's foundation bare,
And Gorgon in her hidden place.
It was a thing of fear to see
So foul a dream upon so fair a face,
And the dreamer lying in that starry shroud.

IV

But from the trance she sudden broke-
The trance, or death into promoted life;
At her feet a shivered yoke,
And in her aspect turned to heaven
No trace of passion or of strife-
A clear calm look. It spake of pain,
But such as purifies from stain-
Sharp pangs that never come again-
And triumph repressed by knowledge meet,
Power delicate, and hope grown wise,
And youth matured for age's seat-
Law on her brow and empire in her eyes.
So she, with graver air and lifted flag;
While the shadow, chased by light,
Fled along the far-brawn height,
And left her on the crag.

Submitted: Friday, January 03, 2003

Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
0 person did not like.

What do you think this poem is about?



Read poems about / on: despair, passion, pride, power, children, america, hair, peace, mother, sleep, dream, fear, heaven, hope, pain, wind, death, light, child

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (America by Herman Melville )

Enter the verification code :

There is no comment submitted by members..

PoemHunter.com Updates

New Poems

  1. Silent Scream, Vivek Tiwari
  2. Your Fault, Von Kimball Barney
  3. Faking news, gajanan mishra
  4. Simply Is No End, Margaret Alice Second
  5. तुम और हम, Priyanka Gupta
  6. Seeing Childhood In Memories, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
  7. Intellectual Gifts, RoseAnn V. Shawiak
  8. God Is Light, Gbolagade Taiwo
  9. Welcome Autumn, Abdullah alHemaidy
  10. shadow of life, Abdullah alHemaidy

Poem of the Day

poet Dante Gabriel Rossetti

Know'st thou not at the fall of the leaf
How the heart feels a languid grief
Laid on it for a covering,
And how sleep seems a goodly thing
...... Read complete »

 

Modern Poem

poet Randall Jarrell

 

Trending Poems

  1. 04 Tongues Made Of Glass, Shaun Shane
  2. The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
  3. Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
  4. Autumn Song, Dante Gabriel Rossetti
  5. Invictus, William Ernest Henley
  6. Phenomenal Woman, Maya Angelou
  7. Daffodils, William Wordsworth
  8. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings, Maya Angelou
  9. If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
  10. Leisure, William Henry Davies

Trending Poets

[Hata Bildir]