Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, FORT TRYON, by ARTHUR GUITERMAN



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FORT TRYON, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Again there's a golden haze
Last Line: Rides alone in a peaceful sky!
Subject(s): Death; New York City - Revolutionary Period; Dead, The


AGAIN there's a golden haze
On the shadow of Hudson glades;
Again are the leaves ablaze
On the breast of the Palisades;
Again from the loft of the wind-swept stair
We watch how the sea-gulls fly,
And we drink full draughts of the sparkling air
From the deep blue cup of sky.

Look south where the ocean rills,
Look east to the dancing Sound,
Look north to the swelling hills
And the vales of the Neutral Ground!
From the Mart of the Sea where the millions toil
To the heights in the farthest ken
There is never a rood of the sacred soil
But was bought with the blood of men.

The red that the woodland shows,
The swell of the city's hum,
Seem the garb of advancing foes
And the roll of a phantom drum;
The glimmer that leaps to the parapet
As we look toward the Northern Town
Is the shimmer of helmet and bayonet
As the Hessian troops come down.

Once more swing the hostile boats
In the eddies of Haarlem Kill,
While the Cross of the Briton floats
On the ramparts of Laurel Hill;
And the grass-mantled battlements wake again
To the whir of the musket-ball
And the shouts of the Maryland Riflemen
As they close with the hosts of Rahl!

What need that defeat be cloaked?
They lost; but was theirs the blame
Who fought till their rifles choked
With the reek of the darted flame?
And the meed of their deaths, of their woes and scars
Is a boon such alone could buy;
See! the stainless Flag of the Clustered Stars
Rides alone in a peaceful sky!





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