Page:Pieces People Ask For.djvu/152

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Ha! the iron bars are loosening!
So! gently on the floor!
I am mad for yon shifting sea,
Frantic I'll spring to liberty!
Now! there goes one bar more!

Another! And now I'm free! I'm free!
Wide is my path to liberty;
For a sailor's foot and hand
Make light of castle-wall,
In its rugged fall
To the golden strand.

Down! down! down!
Beneath the castle's frown!
Surely, I fell!
For blood is flowing, and wounds are wide:
I know it, I know it, 'tis life's full tide,
In crimson swell!
The boat is empty, I lie on the sand,
Far from those bells of my own dear land!
I am dying, alone, but free!
Out in God's glorious sun and light,
Loyal in heart, and true in hand,
To the royal flag of my native land!
Dying, but free,
By the solemn sea!
Mother, good-night!


Send it up to the garret? Well, no, what's the harm,
If it hangs like a horseshoe to serve as a charm?
Had its day? to be sure. Matches ill with things here!
Shall I sack the old friend just because it is queer?
Thing of beauty 'tis not; but a joy none the less,
As my hot lips remember its old-time caress,
And I think on the solace once gurgling between
My lips from that old battered tin canteen.