Sarah Josepha Buell Hale

(1788-1879 / the United States)

Bonds - Poem by Sarah Josepha Buell Hale

Ye may place the trusty guard,
Bolt the dark and narrow room,
Bind the heavy fetter hard,
Till the links the flesh consume;
Never, never, thus confined,
Will enslaved the prisoner be-
There's no fetter on his mind;
And the spirit will be free,-
If stern memory's thrilling tone
Wake no terrors in his heart;
In the visioned future, shown,
If he act the lofty part.
Ye may bar him from the air,
And the light of heaven forbid,-
There's a region fresh and fair,
And its smile can ne'er be hid
From the meek and trusting eyes,
Looking upward steadily;
And his thoughts will thus arise,
Till he triumphs with the free,-
If his soul have never bowed
When a golden Image shone-
If among the servile crowd,
He would follow Truth alone.
Ye may deck the lofty hall
With the wealth of earth and sea,
And, in splendor over all
Wave the banners of the free-
Ye may crown the conqueror there,
With the laurels of the brave;
'Mid the honors ye prepare,
He shall feel himself a slave,-
If ambition rule his thought,
And the highest place he ask,
All the labors he has wrought
Are but scourges to his task.
Ye may twine the living flowers
Where the living fountains glide,
And beneath the rosy bowers
Let the selfish man abide,
And the birds upon the wing,
And the barks upon the wave,
Shall no sense of freedom bring;
All is slavery to the slave!
Mammon's close-linked bonds have bound him,
Self-imposed, and seldom burst;
Though heaven's waters gush around him,
He would pine with earth's poor thirst.

Comments about Bonds by Sarah Josepha Buell Hale

There is no comment submitted by members..

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?

Poem Submitted: Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Famous Poems

  1. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  2. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  3. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  4. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  5. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  6. Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  7. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  8. I Do Not Love You Except Because I Love You
    Pablo Neruda
  9. Do Not Stand At My Grave And Weep
    Mary Elizabeth Frye
  10. Television
    Roald Dahl
[Report Error]