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Carl Sandburg (1878-1967)

Bronzes


I
              1THE bronze General Grant riding a bronze horse in Linc-
      oln Park
              2Shrivels in the sun by day when the motor cars whirr
     by in long processions going somewhere to keep ap-
     pointment for dinner and matineés and buying and
     selling
              3Though in the dusk and nightfall when high waves are
     piling
              4On the slabs of the promenade along the lake shore near
     by
              5  I have seen the general dare the combers come closer
              6And make to ride his bronze horse out into the hoofs
     and guns of the storm.

II
              7I cross Lincoln Park on a winter night when the snow
     is falling.
              8Lincoln in bronze stands among the white lines of snow,
     his bronze forehead meeting soft echoes of the new-
     sies crying forty thousand men are dead along the
     Yser, his bronze ears listening to the mumbled roar
     of the city at his bronze feet.
              9A lithe Indian on a bronze pony, Shakespeare seated with
     long legs in bronze, Garibaldi in a bronze cape, they
     hold places in the cold, lonely snow to-night on their
     pedestals and so they will hold them past midnight
     and into the dawn.

Notes

1] General Grant: Ulysses S. Grant (1822-85), commander general of the victorious union armies in the American civil war, and 18th President of the United States.
Lincoln Park. 19th-century English style rolling park along 5 miles of Chicago's lakefront.

5] combers: curling waves.

8] the Yser: river flowing through France and Belgium into the South Sea.

9] Garibaldi: Giuseppe Garibaldi (1807-82), revolutionary leader in the liberation and unification of Italy under King Victor Emmanuel in 1861.


Online text copyright © 2003, Ian Lancashire for the Department of English, University of Toronto.
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services, University of Toronto Libraries.

Original text: Carl Sandburg, Chicago Poems (New York: Henry Holt and Company, 1916), pp. 56-57. PS 3537 A618C5 1916 Robarts Library.
First publication date: 1916
RPO poem editor: Ian Lancashire
RP edition: RPO 1998.
Recent editing: 4:2002/3/7

Form: Free Verse


Other poems by Carl Sandburg