Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Southward Ho! A Spell of Sunshine >> Chapter VII / Pocahontas; A Legend of Virginia >> Page 117

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Page 117

Poetry | Redfield | 1854
Transcription 117
" Is't: thus thou keep'st thy word with me?
I see not here the spotted fawn, Which thou didst promise me should be,
Ere daylight from the hills was gone, A captive all unharmed caught.
For this, to wreathe its neck, I sought
The purple flower that crowns the wood,�And gather'd from the sandy shore The singing shell with crimson core,
As it were dropp'd with innocent blood. To thee I know the task were light
To rouse the silver-foot and take, Even in its weeping mother's sight,
The bleating captive from the brake. Yet, here, no captive waits for me ;
No trophy of thy skill and toil; Not even the bison-head I see,
The youthful hunter's proper spoil. But, in its stead �ah ! wherefore now,
My father ! do not check thy child! Why is the dark spot on thy brow,
And why thy aspect stern and wild ? What may this mean? no bison chase,
Nor failing sport, not often vain, Hath fix'd that sign upon your face,
Of passionate hate and mortal pain! Ah ! no ! methinks the fearful mood Hath found its birth in hostile blood The war-whoop, shouted as ye went, This told me of your fell intent;
The death-whoop, chanted as ye came, Declared, as well, defeat and shame !"

"Ay!" cried the monarch, " well ye speak ; I feel the words upon my cheek, In burning characters that cry For vengeance on mine enemy. 'Tis true as thou hest said, my child, We met our foemen in the wild, And from the conflict bear away But death and shame to prove the fray. Vainly our warriors fought,�our sires,
Withhold their blessings on our arms ;