Ambrose Bierce

(24 June 1842 - 26 December 1913 / Horse Cave Creek, Ohio)

Montefiore - Poem by Ambrose Bierce

I SAW—’t was in a dream, the other night—
A man whose hair with age was thin and white;
One hundred years had bettered by his birth,
And still his step was firm, his eye was bright.

Before him and about him pressed a crowd.
Each head in reverence was bared and bowed,
And Jews and Gentiles in a hundred tongues
Extolled his deeds and spake his fame aloud.

I joined the throng and, pushing forward, cried,
“Montefiore!” with the rest, and vied
In efforts to caress the hand that ne’er
To want and worth had charity denied.

So closely round him swarmed our shouting clan
He scarce could breathe, and, taking from a pan
A gleaming coin, he tossed it o’er our heads,
And in a moment was a lonely man!


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Poem Submitted: Tuesday, April 20, 2010



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