Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, A SOLDIER POET, by ROSSITER JOHNSON

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

A SOLDIER POET, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Where swell the songs thou shouldst have sung
Last Line: That silence here is music there.
Subject(s): Holidays; Memorial Day; Soldiers; Declaration Day

WHERE swell the songs thou shouldst have sung
By peaceful rivers yet to flow?
Where bloom the smiles thy ready tongue
Would call to lips that loved thee so?
On what far shore of being tossed,
Dost thou resume the genial stave,
And strike again the lyre we lost
By Rappahannock's troubled wave?

If that new world hath hill and stream,
And breezy bank, and quiet dell,
If forests murmur, waters gleam,
And wayside flowers their story tell,
Thy hand ere this has plucked the reed
That wavered by the wooded shore;
Its prisoned soul thy fingers freed,
To float melodious evermore.

So seems it to my musing mood,
So runs it in my surer thought,
That much of beauty, more of good,
For thee the rounded years have wrought;
That life will live, however blown
Like vapor on the summer air;
That power perpetuates its own;
That silence here is music there.

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