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Stedman and Hutchinson, comps. A Library of American Literature:
An Anthology in Eleven Volumes. 1891.
Vols. IX–XI: Literature of the Republic, Part IV., 1861–1889

To Aaron Burr, under Trial for High Treason

By Sarah Wentworth Apthorp Morton (1759–1846)

[Born in Braintree, Mass., 1759. Died at Quincy, Mass., 1846. My Mind and its Thoughts. 1823.]

THOU wonder of the Atlantic shore,

Whose deeds a million hearts appall;

Thy fate shall pity’s eye deplore,

Or vengeance for thy ruin call.

Thou man of soul! whose feeble form

Seems as a leaf the gales defy,

Though scattered in sedition’s storm,

Yet borne by glorious hope on high.

Such did the youthful Ammon seem,

And such does Europe’s scourge appear,

As, of the sun, a vertic beam,

The brightest in the golden year.

Nature, who many a gift bestowed,

The strong herculean limbs denied,

But gave—a mind, where genius glowed,

A soul, to valor’s self allied.

Ambition, as her curse was seen,

Thy every blessing to annoy;

To blight thy laurels’ tender green;

The banner of thy fame destroy.

Ambition, by the bard defined

The fault of godlike hearts alone,

Like fortune in her frenzy, blind,

Here gives a prison, there a throne.