Poems » amy levy » the fight at montgomery s


They have met -- that small band, resolved to be free,
As the fierce winds of Heaven that course over the sea --
They have met, in bright hope, with no presage of fear,
Tho' the bugle and drum of the foeman they hear:
Some seize the dread rifle, some wield the tall pike,
For God and their country -- for Freedom they strike,
No proud ensign of glory bespeaks their renown,
Yet the scorn of defiance now darkens their frown.
See the foeman advancing, and now sounds afar
The clang and the shout of disastrous war.
Yes! onward they come like the mountain's wild flood,
And the lion's dark talons are dappled in blood.
O, God of my country! they turn now to fly --
Hark! the Eagle of Liberty screams in the sky!
Where, where are the thousands that morn should have found
In battle array on that dew-covered ground?
The few that were there, now wildly have flown,
Did fear stay the others?

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Some in the dungeon -- some on swelling flood,
Some seek the shelter of the pathless wood,
And some in exile -- 'neath a foreign sky,
Curse the sad hour they madly turned to fly.
Firmer their tyrants o'er the oozy main
Bind on their shackles -- forge the triple chain,
Till other days they still must sadly bear
The withering curse that marks a Despot's care.