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Like Danes, of old, their fleet they man,
And rove from Beersheba to Dan,
To burn, and beard us—where they can.
at George the Fourth's command,
This vagrant host were sent, to land
And leave in every house a brand.
An idiot only would require
Such war—the worst they could desire-
The felon's war—the war of fire.
The warfare, now, the invaders make,
Must surely keep us all awake,
Or life is lost for freedom's sake.
They said to Cockburn, “ honest Cock !
To make a noise and give a shock,
Push off, and burn their navy-dock :
6. Their capitol shall be emblazed !
How will the buckskins stand amazed,
And curse the day its walls were raised !"
Six thousand heroes disembark:
Each left at night his floating ark,
And Washington was made their mark.
That few would fight them—few or none
Was by their leaders clearly shown,
And, “ Down," they said, “with Madison !"
How close they crept along the shore !
As closely as if Rodgers saw her-
A frigate to a seventy-four.
A veteran host, by veterans led,
With Ross and Cockburn at their head,
They came—they saw-they burn'd—and fled.
But not unpunish'd they retired;
They something paid, for all they fired,
In soldiers kill'd, and chiefs expired.
Five hundred veterans bit the dust,
Who came, inflamed with lucre's lust
And so they waste-and so they must.
They left our Congress naked walls
Farewell to towers and capitols !
To lofty roofs and splendid halls !
To courtly domes and glittering things,
To folly, that too near us clings,
To courtiers who—'tis well—had wings.
Farewell to all but glorious war,
Which yet shall guard Potomac's shore,
And honour lost, and fame restore.
To conquer armies in the field,
Was, once, the surest method held
To make a hostile country yield.
The mode is this, now acted on:
In conflagrating Washington,
They held our independence gone!
Supposing George's house at Kew
Were burn'd, (as we intend to do,)
Would that be burning England too?
Supposing, near the silver Thames
We laid in ashes their Saint James,
Or Blenheim palace wrapp'd in flames;
Made Hampton Court to fire a prey,
And meanly, then, to sneak away,
And never ask them, what's to pay ?
Would that be conquering London town?
Would that subvert the English throne,
Or bring the royal system down?
With all their glare of guards and guns,
How would they look like simpletons,
And not at all the lion's sons !
Supposing, then, we take our turn,
And make it public law, to burn,
Would not old English honour spurn
At such a mean, insidious plan,
Which only suits some savage clan-
And surely not the Englishman!
A doctrine has prevailid too long ;
A king, they hold, can do no wrong-
Merely a pitchfork, without prong:
But de'il may trust such doctrines more;
One king, that wrong'd us, long before,
Has wrongs, by hundreds, yet in store.
He wrong'd us forty years ago;
He wrongs us yet, we surely know;
He'll wrong us till he gets a blow
That, with a vengeance, will repay
The mischiefs we lament this day,
This burning, damn’d, infernal play;
Will send one city to the sky,
Its buildings low, and buildings high,
And buildings-built the Lord knows why;
Will give him an eternal check,
That breaks his heart, or breaks his neck,
And plants our standard on Quebec.
251 TO THE MEMORY OF EDWARD
Late Governor of South Carolina.-By PHILIP FRENEAU.
REMOVED from life's uncertain stage,
In virtue firm, in honour clear,
One of the worthies of our age,
Rutledge! resigns his station here.
Alike in arts of war and peace,
And form'd by Nature to excel,
From early Rome and ancient Greece
He modelli'd all his actions well.
When Britons came, with chains to bind,
Or ravage these devoted lands,
He our firm league of freedom sign'd,
And counsell'd how to break their bands.
To the great cause of honour true,
He took his part with manly pride;
His spirit o'er these regions flew,
The patriots' and the soldiers' guide.
In arts of peace, in war's bold schemes,
Amongst our brightest stars he moved, The Lees, the Moultries, Sumters, Greenes
By all admired, by all beloved. A patriot of superior mould,
He dared all foreign force oppose, Till, from a tyrant's ashes cold,
The mighty pile of freedom rose. In process of succeeding days,
When Peace resumed her joyous reign,
With laurel-wreaths and twining bays
He sought less active life again.
There, warm to plead the orphan's cause,
From Misery's eye to dry the tear,
He stood where Justice guards the laws,
At once humane, at once severe.
'Twas not his firm, enlighten'd mind,
So ardent in affairs of state; 'Twas not that he in armies shined
That made him so completely great: Persuasion dwelt upon his tongue:
He spoke all hush'd, and all were awed; From all he said conviction
sprung, And crowds were eager to applaud. Thus long esteem'd, thus early loved,
The tender husband, friend sincere ; The parent, patriot, sage, approved,
Had now survived his fiftieth yearHad now the highest honours met
That Carolina could bestow;