Verse > Edgar Lee Masters > Spoon River Anthology
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Edgar Lee Masters (1868–1950).  Spoon River Anthology.  1916.

75. John Horace Burleson


I WON the prize essay at school 
Here in the village, 
And published a novel before I was twenty-five. 
I went to the city for themes and to enrich my art; 
There married the banker’s daughter,         5
And later became president of the bank— 
Always looking forward to some leisure 
To write an epic novel of the war. 
Meanwhile friend of the great, and lover of letters, 
And host to Matthew Arnold and to Emerson.  10
An after dinner speaker, writing essays 
For local clubs. At last brought here— 
My boyhood home, you know— 
Not even a little tablet in Chicago 
To keep my name alive.  15
How great it is to write the single line: 
“Roll on, thou deep and dark blue Ocean, roll!” 


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