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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807–1882). Complete Poetical Works. 1893.

Poems on Slavery

The Good Part, that shall not be taken away

SHE dwells by Great Kenhawa’s side,

In valleys green and cool;

And all her hope and all her pride

Are in the village school.

Her soul, like the transparent air

That robes the hills above,

Though not of earth, encircles there

All things with arms of love.

And thus she walks among her girls

With praise and mild rebukes;

Subduing e’en rude village churls

By her angelic looks.

She reads to them at eventide

Of One who came to save;

To cast the captive’s chains aside

And liberate the slave.

And oft the blessed time foretells

When all men shall be free;

And musical, as silver bells,

Their falling chains shall be.

And following her beloved Lord,

In decent poverty,

She makes her life one sweet record

And deed of charity.

For she was rich, and gave up all

To break the iron bands

Of those who waited in her hall,

And labored in her lands.

Long since beyond the Southern Sea

Their outbound sails have sped,

While she, in meek humility,

Now earns her daily bread.

It is their prayers, which never cease,

That clothe her with such grace;

Their blessing is the light of peace

That shines upon her face.