Page:Pocahontas, and Other Poems.djvu/26

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10 POCAHONTAS.


Who led her train of playmates, day by day,
O'er rock, and stream, and wild, a weary way,
Their baskets teeming with the golden ear?
Whose generous hand vouchsaf'd its tireless aid
To guard a nation's germ? Thine, thine, heroic maid!


xxiii.

On sped the tardy seasons,—and the hate
Of the pale strangers wrung the Indian breast.
Their hoary prophet breath'd the ban of fate:—
"Hence with the thunderers! Hide their race, un-blest,
Deep 'neath the soil they falsely call their own;
For, from our fathers' graves, a hollow moan,
Like the lash'd surge, bereaves my soul of rest.
'They come! They come!' it cries. 'Ye once were brave:
Will ye resign the world that the Great Spirit gave?'"


xxiv.

Yet, 'neath the settled countenance of guile,
They veil'd their vengeful purpose, dark and dire,
And wore the semblance of a quiet smile,
To lull the victim of their deadly ire:
But ye, who hold of history's scroll the pen,
Blame not too much those erring, red-brow'd men,
Tho' nurs'd in wiles. Fear is the white-lipp'd sire
Of subterfuge and treachery. 'Twere in vain
To bid the soul be true, that writhes beneath his chain.