Indian Names

I

‘How can the red men be forgotten, while so many of our states and territories, bays, lakes, and rivers, are indelibly stamped by names of their giving?’
Ye say they all have passed away,
That noble race and brave,
That their light canoes have vanished
From off the crested wave;
That ’mid the forests where they roamed
There rings no hunter shout,
But their name is on your waters,
Ye may not wash it out.

’Tis where Ontario’s billow
Like Ocean’s surge is curled,
Where strong Niagara’s thunders wake
The echo of the world.
Where red Missouri bringeth
Rich tribute from the west,
And Rappahannock sweetly sleeps
On green Virginia’s breast.

Ye say their cone-like cabins,
That clustered o’er the vale,
Have fled away like withered leaves
Before the autumn gale,
But their memory liveth on your hills,
Their baptism on your shore,
Your everlasting rivers speak
Their dialect of yore.

Old Massachusetts wears it,
Within her lordly crown,
And broad Ohio bears it,
Amid his young renown;
Connecticut hath wreathed it
Where her quiet foliage waves,
And bold Kentucky breathed it hoarse
Through all her ancient caves.

Wachuset hides its lingering voice
Within his rocky heart,
And Alleghany graves its tone
Throughout his lofty chart;
Monadnock on his forehead hoar
Doth seal the sacred trust,
Your mountains build their monument,
Though ye destroy their dust.

Ye call these red-browned brethren
The insects of an hour,
Crushed like the noteless worm amid
The regions of their power;
Ye drive them from their father’s lands,
Ye break of faith the seal,
But can ye from the court of Heaven
Exclude their last appeal?

Ye see their unresisting tribes,
With toilsome step and slow,
On through the trackless desert pass
A caravan of woe;
Think ye the Eternal’s ear is deaf?
His sleepless vision dim?
Think ye the soul’s blood may not cry
From that far land to him?

114
Rating:

31-05-2024 19:03:44
The poem also questions the treatment of the indigenous peoples, highlighting the injustice and betrayal they have faced. The imagery of the caravan of woe and the soul's cry for justice evoke a sense of empathy and reflection on the consequences of past actions. It serves as a powerful reminder of the importance of honoring and preserving the history and contributions of Native American peoples.
31-05-2024 19:03:51
The poet challenges the idea that the red men have been forgotten, pointing out how their names and memories are woven into the very fabric of the land, from the rivers to the mountains.

Comment form:

*Max text - 500. Manual moderation.

Similar Poems:

An Ode on the Popular Superstitions of the Highlands of Scotland, Considered as the Subject of Poetry by William Collins
William Collins
Home, thou return'st from Thames, whose Naiads long
Have seen thee ling'ring, with a fond delay,
Mid those soft friends, whose hearts, some future day,
Shall melt, perhaps, to hear thy tragic song.
Go, not unmindful of that cordial youth,
Whom, long endear'd, thou leav'st by Lavant's side;
Together let us wish him lasting truth,
And joy untainted with his destined bride.
Go! nor regardless, while these numbers boast
My short-lived bliss, forget my social name;
But think far off how, on the southern coast,
I met thy friendship with an equal flame!
Fresh to that soil thou turn'st, whose ev'ry vale
Shall prompt the poet, and his song demand:
To thee thy copious subjects ne'er shall fail;
Read Poem
0
71
Rating:

Meditations by Margaret Fuller
Margaret Fuller
Sunday, 12 May 1833 The clouds are marshalling across the sky,
Leaving their deepest tints upon yon range
Of soul-alluring hills. The breeze comes softly,
Laden with tribute that a hundred orchards
Read Poem
0
62
Rating:

On the Death of the Late Earl of Rochester by Aphra Behn
Aphra Behn
Mourn, mourn, ye Muses, all your loss deplore,
The young, the noble Strephon is no more.
Yes, yes, he fled quick as departing light,
And ne’er shall rise from Death’s eternal night,
So rich a prize the Stygian gods ne’er bore,
Such wit, such beauty, never graced their shore.
He was but lent this duller world t’ improve
In all the charms of poetry, and love;
Both were his gift, which freely he bestowed,
And like a god, dealt to the wond’ring crowd.
Scorning the little vanity of fame,
Spight of himself attained a glorious name.
But oh! in vain was all his peevish pride,
The sun as soon might his vast luster hide,
As piercing, pointed, and more lasting bright,
Read Poem
0
73
Rating:

Psalm 58 by Isaac Watts
Isaac Watts
Warning to Magistrates Judges, who rule the world by laws,
Will ye despise the righteous cause,
When th’injur’d poor before you stands?
Dare ye condemn the righteous poor,
Read Poem
0
81
Rating:

Hertha by Algernon Charles Swinburne
Algernon Charles Swinburne
I am that which began;
Out of me the years roll;
Out of me God and man;
I am equal and whole;
God changes, and man, and the form of them bodily; I am the soul.

Before ever land was,
Before ever the sea,
Or soft hair of the grass,
Or fair limbs of the tree,
Or the fresh-coloured fruit of my branches, I was, and thy soul was in me.

First life on my sources
First drifted and swam;
Out of me are the forces
Read Poem
0
88
Rating:

Morituri Salutamus: Poem for the Fiftieth Anniversary of the Class of 1825 in Bowdoin College by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Tempora labuntur, tacitisque senescimus annis,
Et fugiunt freno non remorante dies.
Ovid, Fastorum, Lib. vi. "O Cæsar, we who are about to die
Salute you!" was the gladiators' cry
In the arena, standing face to face
With death and with the Roman populace.
Read Poem
0
65
Rating:

Ode: Intimations of Immortality from Recollections of Early Childhood by William Wordsworth
William Wordsworth
The child is father of the man;
And I could wish my days to be
Bound each to each by natural piety.
(Wordsworth, "My Heart Leaps Up")
Read Poem
0
100
Rating:

The Pilgrims by Algernon Charles Swinburne
Algernon Charles Swinburne
Who is your lady of love, O ye that pass
Singing? and is it for sorrow of that which was
That ye sing sadly, or dream of what shall be?
For gladly at once and sadly it seems ye sing.
— Our lady of love by you is unbeholden;
For hands she hath none, nor eyes, nor lips, nor golden
Treasure of hair, nor face nor form; but we
That love, we know her more fair than anything.

— Is she a queen, having great gifts to give?
— Yea, these; that whoso hath seen her shall not live
Except he serve her sorrowing, with strange pain,
Travail and bloodshedding and bitterer tears;
And when she bids die he shall surely die.
And he shall leave all things under the sky
Read Poem
0
79
Rating:

Stanzas from the Grande Chartreuse by Matthew Arnold
Matthew Arnold
Through Alpine meadows soft-suffused
With rain, where thick the crocus blows,
Past the dark forges long disused,
The mule-track from Saint Laurent goes.
The bridge is cross'd, and slow we ride,
Through forest, up the mountain-side.

The autumnal evening darkens round,
The wind is up, and drives the rain;
While, hark! far down, with strangled sound
Doth the Dead Guier's stream complain,
Where that wet smoke, among the woods,
Over his boiling cauldron broods.

Swift rush the spectral vapours white
Read Poem
0
80
Rating: