Verse > Anthologies > Samuel Kettell, ed. > Specimens of American Poetry
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Samuel Kettell, ed.  Specimens of American Poetry.  1829.
 
To Seneca Lake
By James Gates Percival (1795–1856)
 
ON thy fair bosom, silver lake!
The wild swan spreads his snowy sail,
And round his breast the ripples break,
As down he bears before the gale.
 
On thy fair bosom, waveless stream!        5
The dipping paddle echoes far,
And flashes in the moonlight gleam,
And bright reflects the polar star.
 
The waves along thy pebbly shore,
As blows the north wind, heave their foam,        10
And curl around the dashing oar,
As late the boatman hies him home.
 
How sweet, at set of sun, to view
Thy golden mirror spreading wide,
And see the mist of mantling blue        15
Float round the distant mountain’s side.
 
At midnight hour, as shines the moon,
A sheet of silver spreads below,
And swift she cuts, at highest noon,
Light clouds, like wreaths of purest snow.        20
 
On thy fair bosom, silver lake!
O! I could ever sweep the oar,
When early birds at morning wake,
And evening tells us toil is o’er.
 
 
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