To Fitz-Greene Halleck
I see the sons of genius rise
The nobles of our land,
And foremost in the gathering ranks
I see the poet-band.
That priesthood of the Beautiful
To whom alone 't is given
To lift our spirits from the dust,
Back to their native heaven.
But there is one among the throng
Not passed his manhood's prime,
The laurel-wreath upon his brow
Has greener grown with time;
And in his eye yet glows the light
Of the celestial fire,
But cast beside him on the earth
Is his neglected lyre.
The lyre whose high heroic notes
A thousand hearts have stirred
Lies mute---the skilful hand no more
Awakes one slumbering chord.
O poet, rouse thee from thy dreams!
Wake from the voiceless slumbers,
And once again give to the breeze
The music of thy numbers.
Sing! for our country claims her bards,
She listens for thy strains;
Sing! for upon our jarring earth
Too much of discord reigns.