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JOSEPH RODMAN DRAKE
American poet
(1795 - 1820)

He put his acorn-helmet on;
  It was plum'd of the silk of the thistle down;
    The corselet plate, that guarded his breast,
      Was once the wild bees' golden vest;
        His cloak, of a thousand mingled dyes,
          Was form'd of the wings of butterflies;
            His shield was the shell of a lady-bug queen,
              Studs of gold on a ground of green;
                And the quivering lance which he brandish'd bright,
                  Was the sting of a wasp he had slain in fight.
      - [Fairies]

Her mantle was the purple roll'd
  At twilight in the west afar;
    'Twas tied with threads of dawning gold
      And button'd with a sparkling star.
      - [Fairies]

O, pleasant is the welcome kiss
  When day's dull round is o'er;
    And sweet the music of the step
      That meets us at the door.
      - [Music]

The palace of the sylphid queen--
  Its spiral columns, gleaming bright,
    Were streamers of the northern light;
      Its curtain's light and lovely flush
        Was of the morning's rosy blush;
          And the ceiling fair that rose aboon,
            The white and feathery fleece of noon.
      - [Fairies]

Their harps are of the amber shade,
  That hides the blush of waking day,
    And every gleamy string is made
      Of silvery moonshine's lengthen'd ray.
      - [Fairies]

Their little minim forms arrayed in all the tricksy pomp of fairy pride.
      - [Fairies]

Yet I will look upon thy face again,
  My own romantic Bronx, and it will be
    A face more pleasant than the face of men.
      Thy waves are old companions, I shall see
        A well remembered form in each old tree
          And hear a voice long loved in thy wild minstrelsy.
      - Bronx [Bronx River : Rivers]

When Freedom from her mountain height
  Unfurled her standard to the air,
    She tore the azure robe of night,
      And set the stars of glory there.
      - The Croakers--The American Flag (st. 1)
        [Flags]

Flag of the free heart's hope and home!
  By angel hands to valour given,
    Thy stars have lit the welkin dome;
      And all thy hues were born in heaven.
      - The Croakers--The American Flag (st. 5)
        [Flags]


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