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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


By Rollin Mallory Doggett (1831–1901)

[Born in Richville, St. Lawrence Co., N. Y., 1831. Died in San Francisco, Cal., 1901.]

THE COCOA, with its crest of spears,

Stands sentry ’round the crescent shore,

And algeroba, bent with years,

Keeps watch beside the lanai door.

The cool winds fan the mango’s cheek,

The mynah flits from tree to tree,

And zephyrs to the roses speak

Their sweetest words at Waikiki.

Like truant children of the deep

Escaped behind a coral wall,

The lisping wavelets laugh and leap,

Nor heed old ocean’s stern recall.

All day they frolic with the sands,

Kiss pink-lipped shells in wanton glee,

Make windrows with their patting hands,

And, singing, sleep at Waikiki.

The closing curtain of the night

Is shading down the gold to gray,

And on the reef the flaring light

Of brown-armed fisher, far away,

Dyes red the waves that thunder by

The sturdy bulwarks of the sea,

And breaking into ripplets, die

Upon the breast of Waikiki.

Now come wild echoes through the air,

And shadow of a rugged face,

With iron limbs and shoulders bare—

The chieftain of a dusky race

Whose hostile front, with lifted lance,

And war-prows flecking all the sea,

Swept through the palms with bold advance

Along the shores of Waikiki.

And all unchecked in martial course

By menace or the spear of foe,

The misty columns move in force,

Their chieftain leading as they go,

Up, up Nuuanu’s rocky bed

Till, looking down through clouds, they see

The beetling front of Diamond Head

And silver sands of Waikiki.

On! on! the foe has reached the verge,

And o’er the Pali’s awful side,

With shout and stroke and battle-surge

Is poured a shrieking human tide.

Then all is still; the work is done;

And thus the shadows come to me

When twilight clouds, kissed by the sun,

Have bronzed the shores of Waikiki.

And then, with tropic murmurs blent,

Come distant voices half divine;

While mingled with the ylangylang’s scent

Is breath of sage and mountain pine;

And from Diablo’s vine-clad feet,

From desert bleak and green Maumee,

Are wafted strains to me as sweet

As e’er were heard at Waikiki.


O Waikiki! O scene of peace!

O home of beauty and of dreams!

No haven in the isles of Greece

Can chord the harp to sweeter themes;

For houries haunt the broad lanais,

While scented zephyrs cool the lea,

And, looking down from sunset skies,

The angels smile on Waikiki.

Tributes of Hawaiian Verse. 1882.