Verse > Anthologies > Samuel Kettell, ed. > Specimens of American Poetry
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CONTENTS · BIBLIOGRAPHIC RECORD
Samuel Kettell, ed.  Specimens of American Poetry.  1829.
 
Brief Account of the Agency of the Hon. John Winthrop
By Roger Wolcott (1679–1767)
 
  “RISE up,” quoth Charles; “my liberal hand supplies
All needful help to every one that cries;
Nor shall I be illiberal to you:
But, prithee, Winthrop, please to let me know
By whom it was your place did first commence,        5
Your patriarchs that led your tribes from hence?”
 
  “If to declare their worth, is what you ask,
Then I must beg your pardon. That’s a task
So worthy due performance, and so great,
As goes beyond my utterance and conceit:        10
But virtue never fails; succeeding days
Shall much regard their merits, and shall raise
Men of bright parts and moving oratory,
Who shall emblazon their immortal glory.
  But if you ask to gain intelligence,        15
What were the reasons why they went from hence,
What straits they met with in their way, and there?
These facts I think I ’m able to declare.
  RELIGION was the cause: Divinity
Having declar’d the gospel shine should be        20
Extensive as the sun’s diurnal shine;
This mov’d our founders to this great design.
And sure the holy spirit from above,
That first did quickning on the waters move,
Inspir’d their minds, and fill’d them with intents,        25
To bring to pass such glorious events.
And now they wholly to this work devote,
Mind not the country they are going out:
Their ancient homes they leave, to come no more.
Their weeping friends and kindred on the shore        30
They bid adieu, and with an aching heart
Shake hands; ’tis hard when dearest friends must part.
But here they part, and leave their parent isle,
Their whilome happy seat. The winds awhile
Are courteous, and conduct them on their way,        35
To near the midst of the Atlantic sea,
When suddenly their pleasant gales they change
For dismal storms that on the ocean range.
For faithless Æolus, meditating harms,
Breaks up the peace, and priding much in arms,        40
Unbars the great artillery of heaven,
And at the fatal signal by him given,
The cloudy chariots threatening take the plains;
Drawn by wing’d steeds, hard pressing on their reins.
These vast battalions, in dire aspect rais’d,        45
Start from the barriers—night with lightning blaz’d.
Whilst clashing wheels resounding thunder cracks,
Struck mortals deaf, and heaven astonish’d shakes.
  Here the ship captain, in the midnight watch,
Stamps on the deck, and thunders up the hatch;        50
And to the mariners aloud he cries,
‘Now all from safe recumbency arise:
All hands aloft, and stand well to your tack,
Engendering storms have cloth’d the sky with black,
Big tempests threaten to undo the world:        55
Down topsail, let the mainsail soon be furl’d:
Haste to the foresail, there take up a reef:
’Tis time, boys, now if ever, to be brief;
Aloof for life; let ’s try to stem the tide,
The ship ’s much water, thus we may not ride:        60
Stand roomer then, let ’s run before the sea,
That so the ship may feel her steerage way:
Steady at helm!’ Swiftly along she scuds,
Before the wind, and cuts the foaming suds.
Sometimes aloft she lifts her prow so high,        65
As if she ’d run her bowsprit through the sky;
Then from the summit ebbs and hurries down,
As if her way were to the centre shown.
  Meanwhile our founders in the cabin sat,
Reflecting on their true and sad estate;        70
Whilst holy Warham’s sacred lips did treat
About God’s promises and mercies great.
  Still more gigantic births spring from the clouds,
Which tore the tatter’d canvass from the shrouds,
And dreadful balls of lightning fill the air,        75
Shot from the hand of the great Thunderer.
  And now a mighty sea the ship o’ertakes,
Which falling on the deck, the bulk-head breaks;
The sailors cling to ropes, and frighted cry,
‘The ship is foundered, we die! we die!’        80
  Those in the cabin heard the sailors screech;
All rise, and reverend Warham do beseech,
That he would now lift up to heaven a cry
For preservation in extremity.
He with a faith sure bottom’d on the word        85
Of Him that was of sea and winds the Lord,
His eyes lifts up to Heaven, his hands extends,
And fervent prayers for deliverance sends.
The winds abate, the threatening waves appease,
And a sweet calm sits regent on the seas,        90
They bless the name of their deliverer,
Who now they found a God that heareth prayer.
  Still further westward on they keep their way,
Ploughing the pavement of the briny sea,
Till the vast ocean they had overpast,        95
And in Connecticut their anchors cast.
  Here came Soheage, and told the company,
The garden of America did lie
Further up the stream, near fifty miles from hence,
Part of which country he himself was prince.        100
Much ask’d of th’ soil, much of the government,
What kings were there? The land of what extent?
All which, by his free answers, when they knew,
They o’er his back a scarlet mantle threw.
  And now, invited with fresh southern gales,        105
They weigh their anchors, and they hoist their sails,
And northward for th’ expected country stood,
Upon the smiling pavement of the flood.
At length they entered those awful straits,
Where the stream runs through adamantic gates.        110
’Twas strange to see the banks advanc’d so high,
As if with Atlas they bore up the sky.
But when those dismal straits were passed through,
A glorious country opens to their view,
Cloth’d all in green, and to the eye presents        115
Nature’s best fruits and richest ornaments.
  Cheer’d with the sight, they set all sails a-trip,
And rais’d the English ensign on their ship.
Brave youths, with eager strokes, bend knotty oars,
Glad shouts bring cheerful echoes from the shores.        120
  As when the wounded amorous doth spy
His smiling fortune in his lady’s eye,
O how his veins and breast swell with a flood
Of pleasing raptures, that revive his blood!
And grown impatient now of all delays,        125
No longer he deliberating stays;
But through the force of her resistless charms,
He throws him, soul and body, in her arms.
  So we, amazed at these seen delights,
Which to fruition every sense invites,        130
Our eager minds, already captive made,
Grow most impatient now to be delay’d,
This most delightful country to possess;
And forward, with industrious speed, we press,
Upon the virgin stream, who had, as yet,        135
Never been violated with a ship.
  Upon the banks king Aramamet stood,
And round about his wondering multitude,
Greatly amaz’d at such an uncouth show:
What is ’t? they cried. Some say, a great canoe.        140
Others, a bird that in the air doth fly,
With her long bill, and wings up to the sky.
But other some, whom fear did terrify,
Cried, ’tis some ill-presaging prodigy.
Nothing on earth more impetuous we find        145
Than terror, when it seizeth on the mind.
Dreadful effects of this did soon appear,
The multitude surpris’d with chilling fear;
With looks distracted, and out staring eyes,
Each scares himself, and others terrifies;        150
Only the king, who had within his breast,
A heart which foolish fear could not infest,
Perceived the matter, and the ship he hails:
‘Now drop your anchors, and unbend your sails;
And if for peace and friendship you are come,        155
And do desire this land should be your home,
Let some of your chief leaders come to land,
And now with me join their right hand to hand.
  Sails lower amain, nor oars now touch the flood,
Down drop the anchors deep into the mud:        160
Their chiefs repair to land, and with them bring,
Obliging presents for the Indian king.
Majestic Aramamet, with his lords,
Steps forth to meet those guests without his guards;
Meeting he paus’d, astonish’d at the sight;        165
Such men, such airs, with countenances bright,
He ne’er had seen, nor now to see expecting;
Amaz’d he stood a while! but recollecting
His scatter’d intellect, he cries, ‘Who’s there?
Whence come you? Seek you with us peace or war?’        170
  ‘Britons you see, say they, and we are come
From England, happiest seat in Christendom,
Where mighty Charles obligeth sea and land,
To yield obedience to his sceptred hand;
Nor came we here to live with you in wars,        175
As He knows best, that made sun, moon, and stars;
But rather here to live with you in peace,
Till day and night’s successive changes cease.
This we propose; and this if you approve,
And do respect our neighborhood and love,        180
Then sell us land, whereon we towns may plant,
And join with us in friendly covenant.’
  ‘What you propose, (quoth he,) is just and good,
And I shall e’er respect your neighborhood;
Land you may have, we value not the soil,        185
Accounting tillage too severe a toil.’
  Then he his own right hand to theirs doth join,
Of his sure friendship the undoubted sign;
Then brings them to his house, and from his boards
Feasts them with what his country best affords.        190
Whilst here they stay at Aramamet’s court,
Hither the neighboring Indian kings resort,
And join with them in articles of peace,
And of their lands make firm conveyances;
And being now by deeds and leagues secure,        195
Their towns they build, their purchas’d land manure.”
 
  Thus far he said; Then said his majesty,
“Methinks, I have a curiosity
To know this country, that for ages past
Lay hid, and you have now found out at last;        200
This new found river, is it fresh and fair?
What land adjoins to it? Has ’t a pleasant air?”

  To this question Winthrop replies with several Scripture allusions, and presently branches off into an account of the Connecticut River.
 
  “This gallant stream keeps running from the head
Four hundred miles ere it with Neptune bed,
Passing along hundreds of rivulets,        205
From either bank its crystal waves besets,
Freely to pay their tributes to this stream,
As being chief and sovereign unto them;
It bears no torrent nor impetuous course,
As if ’twere driven to the sea by force.        210
But calmly on a gentle wave doth move,
As if ’twere drawn to Thetis’ house by love.
  The water ’s fresh and sweet; and he that swims
In it, recruits and cures his surfeit limbs.
The fisherman the fry with pleasure gets,        215
With seines, pots, angles, and his trammel nets.
In it swim salmon, sturgeon, carp and eels;
Above, fly cranes, geese, ducks, herons and teals;
And swans, which take such pleasure as they fly,
They sing their hymns oft long before they die.        220
  The grassy banks are like a verdant bed,
With choicest flowers all enameled,
O’er which the winged choristers do fly,
And wound the air with wondrous melody,
Here philomel, high perch’d upon a thorn,        225
Sings cheerful hymns to the approaching morn.
The song once set, each bird tunes up his lyre,
Responding heavenly music through the quire,
Within these fields, fair banks of violets grows;
And near them stand the air perfuming rose,        230
And yellow lilies fair enameled,
With ruddy spots here blushing hang the head.
  These meadows serve not only for the sight,
To charm the eye with wonder and delight;
But for their excellent fertility,        235
Transcends each spot that ere beheld Sol’s eye,
Here lady Flora’s richest treasure grows,
And here she bounteously her gifts bestows.
The husbandman, for all his diligence,
Receives an ample, liberal recompense,        240
And feasting on the kidneys of the wheat,
Doth soon his labor and his toil forget.
  After the meadows thus have took their place,
The champion plains draw up to fill the space.
Fair in their prospect, pleasant, fruitful, wide,        245
Here Tellus may be seen in all his pride.
Cloud-kissing pines in stately mangroves stand,
Firm oaks fair branches wide and large extend.
The fir, the box, the balm tree, here stand mute,
So do the nut trees, laden down with fruit.        250
In shady vales the fruitful vine o’erwhelms
The waving branches of the bending elms.
  Within the covert of these shady boughs,
The loving turtle and his lovely spouse,
From bough to bough, in deep affection move,        255
And with chaste joy reciprocate their love.
At the cool brooks, the beavers and the minks
Keep house, and here the hart and panther drinks.
And partridges here keep in memory,
How to their loss they soared once too high.        260
  Within these spacious forests, fresh and green,
No monsters of burnt Afric may be seen.
No hissing basilisk stands to affright,
Nor seps, nor hemorhus, with mortal bite;
The Lybian lion ne’er set footing here,        265
Nor tigers of Numidia do appear.
But here the moose his spreading antlers sways,
And bears down stubborn standels with their sprays.
These sport themselves within these woods, and here
The fatted roebuck and the fallow deer        270
Yield venison as good as that which won
The patriarchal benediction.
  Each plain is bounded at its utmost edge
With a long chain of mountains in a ridge,
Whose azure tops advance themselves so high,        275
They seem like pendants hanging in the sky.
Twentyfour miles, surveyors do account
Between the eastern and the western mount;
In which vast interspace, pleasant and fair,
Zephyrus whispers a delightful air.        280
These mountains stand at equidistant space
From the fair flood, in such majestic grace,
Their looks alone are able to inspire
An active brain with a mercurial fire.
The muses hence their ample dews distil,        285
More than was feigned from the twy-topt hill.
And if those witty men that have us told
Strange tales of mountains in the days of old,
Had they but seen how these are elevated,
We should have found them far more celebrated,        290
In the fine works that they have left to us,
Than high Olympus or long Caucasus;
Or Latmos, which Diana stops upon,
There to salute her dear Endymion.
  Hither the eagles fly, and lay their eggs;        295
Then bring their young ones forth out of those crags.
And force them to behold Sol’s majesty,
In mid noon glory, with a steady eye.
Here the old eagle his long beak belays
Upon a rock, till he renews his days.        300
And hence they from afar behold their prey,
And with a steady pinion wing their way.
But why so excellent a land should lie
So many ages in obscurity,
Unseen, unheard of, or unthought upon,        305
I think there’s no good reason can be shown
Unless ’twere as it seems the mind of fate,
Your royal name long to perpetuate,
So order’d it that such a land might owe
Thanks for its liberties, great Sir, to you.”

  A narrative of the Pequot war is commenced, and the following account is given of a set battle between the Christian settlers and the Aborigines.
        310
 
  “After devotions thus to Heaven paid,
Up to the enemy our armies led,
Silent as the riphean snow doth fall,
Or fishes walk in Neptune’s spacious hall.
  Now Lucifer had just put out his head,        315
To call Aurora from old Tithon’s bed.
Whereat the troops of the approaching light,
Began to beat the reg’ments of the night.
  But Morpheus, with his unperceived bands,
Had clos’d the Pequots’ eyes, and chain’d their hands.        320
All lay asleep, save one sagacious wretch,
Who destin’d was to stand upon the watch.
Firm to his charge, with diligence he applies,
And looks around with fierce lyncean eyes.
When our avant couriers he espy’d,        325
Opening his lungs aloud, ‘Auwunux!’ cry’d.”
  “Auwunux,” said our king, “what does that mean?”
“It signifies,” said Winthrop, “Englishmen.
  The startling news doth every soldier rouse,
Each arms and hastens to his rendezvous.        330
Meantime the English did the fort attach
And in the same had opened a breach,
Through which our brave Alcides enter’d first,
In after whom his valiant soldiers thrust.
  Before the breach an unappalled band        335
Of warlike Pequots, with bow and arrows stand.
With cheerful accents these themselves confirm,
To die like men, or to outface the storm.
Then gallantly the English they assail,
With winged arrows, like a shower of hail.        340
These ours endure; and with like violence,
Sent lead and sulphur back in recompense.
  And now the sight grew more and more intense,
Each violent death enflames the violence.
Charge answered charge, and shout reply’d to shout;        345
Both parties like enraged furies fought;
Till death, in all its horrid forms appears,
And dreadful noise keeps clamoring in our ears.
  Now as some spacious rivers in their way,
By which they travel onwards to the sea,        350
Meet with some mighty precipice, from whence,
Enrag’d, they throw themselves with violence
Upon the stubborn rocks that lie below,
To make disturbance in the way they go.
Here, though the fury of the fray doth make        355
The near adjacent rocks and mountains quake,
Still the remorseless stream keeps on its course,
Nor will abate a moment of its force,
But rather hastens by impetuous facts
To throw itself into those cataracts.        360
  And so it happened with our soldiers here,
Whose fortune ’twas to travel in the rear.
The combatings of these within the breaches,
With dreadful noise their listening ears attaches;
And from their foes, and from their brethren,        365
Loud cries of fighting and of dying men.
  Sense of the danger doth not them affright,
But rather proves a motive to excite
The martial flame in every soldier’s breast,
And on they like enraged lions prest;        370
Determined upon the spot to die,
Or from the foe obtain the victory.
  Now fortune shows to the beholders’ sight,
A very dreadful, yet a doubtful fight;
Whilst mighty men, born in far distant land,        375
Stood foot to foot, engaging hand to hand.
  As when some mighty tempests that arise,
Meet with embattled fury in the skies:
Fire balls of lightnings and loud thunders rend
And tear the raging parties that contend.        380
  So did the fury of these mighty foes,
With which they did each others’ force oppose,
Bring on such ruins as might daunt with fears
The hearts of any men, excepting theirs.
  Never did Pequots fight with greater pride;        385
Never was English valor better tried.
Never was ground soak’d with more gallant blood
Than the aceldama whereon we stood.
Sometimes one party victory soon expect,
As soon their eager hopes are countercheck’d.        390
And those that seem’d as conquered before,
Repel with greater force the conqueror.
Three times the Pequots seemed to be beat:
As many times they made their foes retreat.
And now our hope and help for victory,        395
Chiefly depended from the arm on high.
  As when Euroclydon the forest rends,
The bigger oaks fall down, the lesser bends
The beaten limbs and leaves before him scour,
Affrighted and enforced by his power;        400
To some huge rock, whose adamantine brow,
Outbraves the fury of all winds that blow;
There hoping to be hid from the high charge
Of fierce pursuers, by his mighty verge.
The winds in pressing troops demand surrender,        405
Of the pursued, and boisterous storm and thunder;
But he browbeats, and masters all their pride,
And sends them roaring to the larboard side.
  So Mason here, most strongly dress’d in arms,
Reanimates his men, their ranks reforms;        410
Then leading on, through deaths and dangers goes,
And beats the thickest squadrons of the foes.
  Prince Mononotto sees his squadrons fly,
And on our general having fix’d his eye,
Rage and revenge his spirits quickening,        415
He set a mortal arrow in the string.
 
  Then to his god and fathers’ ghosts he pray’d,
‘Hear, O immortal powers, hear me,’ he said;
‘And pity Mistick, save the tottering town,
And on our foes hurl dreadful vengeance down.        420
Will you forsake your altars and abodes,
To those contemners of immortal gods?
Will those pay hecatombs unto your shrine,
Who have deny’d your powers to be divine?
O favor us; our hopes on you are built;        425
But if you are mindful of our former guilt,
Determine final ruin on us all;
Yet let us not quite unrevenged fall.
Here I devote this of our enemies
His precious life to you a sacrifice.        430
Nor shall I covet long to be alive,
If such a mischief I might once survive.
But, O indulgent, hearken to my prayer;
Try us once more; this once the city spare:
And take my gift, let your acceptance be        435
An omen we shall gain the victory.’
 
  That very instant Mason did advance,
Whereat rage interrupts his utterance;
Nor could he add a word to what was said,
But drew the winged arrow to the head:        440
And aiming right, discharg’d it; whereupon
Its fury made the piercing air to groan.
  But wary Mason, with his active spear,
Glanced the prince’s arrow in the air:
Whereat the Pequots, quite discouraged,        445
Threw down the gauntlet, and from battle fled.
  Mason, swift as the chased roe on foot,
Outstrips the rest in making the pursuit.
Entering the palace, in a hall he found
A multitude of foes, who gather’d round        450
This mighty man, on every side engag’d
Like bears bereaved of their whelps enrag’d.
  One finding such resistance where  *  *  *
His mind, his weapons and his eyes  *  *  *
Their boldness much his martial sprite provokes,        455
And round he lays his deep inveterate strokes.
Making his sword at each enforced blow
Send great soul’d heroes to the shades below.
  But as when Hercules did undertake
A doubtful combat with the Lernian snake,        460
Fondly propos’d, if he cut off her head,
The monster might with ease be vanquished.
  But when he the experiment did make,
Soon to his hazard found his dear mistake,
And that as often as he cut off one,        465
Another instantly sprang in its room.
*      *      *      *      *
  After so many deaths and dangers past,
Mason was thoroughly enflam’d at last:
He snatch’d a blazing bavin with his hand,
And fir’d the stately palace with the brand.        470
And soon the towering and rapacious flame
All hope of opposition overcame.
Eurus and Notus readily subjoin
Their best assistance to this great design;
Drive pitchy flames in vast enfoldings down,        475
And dreadful globes of fire along the town.
  And now the English army marched out,
To hem this flaming city round about;
That such as strived to escape the fire,
Might by the fury of their arms expire.        480
  But O what language or what tongue can tell,
This dreadful emblem of the flames of hell!
No fantasy sufficient is to dream,
A faint idea of their woes extreme.
Some like unlucky comets do appear,        485
Rushing along the streets with flagrant hair:
Some seeking safety clamber up the wall,
Then down again with blazing fingers fall.
In this last hour of extremity,
Friends and relations met in company;        490
But all in vain, their tender sympathy
Cannot allay, but makes their misery.
The paramour here met his amorous dame,
Whose eye had often set his heart in flame:
Urg’d with the motives of her love and fear,        495
She runs and clasps her arms about her dear:
Where weeping on his bosom as she lies,
And languisheth, on him she sets her eyes;
Till those bright lamps do with her life expire,
And leave him weltering in a double fire.        500
  The fair and beauteous bride, with all her charms,
This night lay melting in her bridegroom’s arms.
This morning in his bosom yields her life,
While he dies sympathizing with his wife.
In love, relation, and in life the same,        505
The same in death, both die in the same flame.
Their souls united, both at once repair
Unto their place appointed through the air.
  The gracious father here stood looking on
His little brood with deep affection;        510
They round about him at each quarter stands,
With piteous looks, each lifts his little hands
To him for shelter, and then nearer throng,
Whilst piercing cries for help flow from each tongue.
Fain would he give their miseries relief,        515
Though with the forfeiture of his own life:
But finds his power too short to shield off harms,
The torturing flame arrests them in his arms.
The tender mother with like woes opprest,
Beholds her infant frying at her breast;        520
Crying and looking on her, as it fries;
Till death shuts up its heart affecting eyes.
  The conquering flame long sorrows doth prevent,
And vanquish’d life soon breaks imprisonment.
Souls leave their tenements, gone to decay,        525
And fly untouched through the flames away.
Now all with speed to final ruin haste,
And soon this tragic scene is overpast.
The town, its wealth, high battlements and spires,
Now sinketh, weltering in conjoining fires.        530
  The general commands the officers with speed,
To see his men drawn up and martialed:
Which being done, they wheel the ranks,
And kneeling down, to Heaven all gave thanks.
  By this Aurora doth with gold adorn        535
The ever beauteous eyelids of the morn;
And burning Titan his exhaustless rays,
Bright in the eastern horizon displays;
Then soon appearing in majestic awe,
Makes all the starry deities withdraw;        540
Veiling their faces in deep reverence,
Before the throne of his magnificence.
  And now the English their red cross display,
And under it march bravely toward the sea;
There hoping in this needful hour to meet        545
Ample provisions coming with the fleet.
  Meantime came tidings to Sasacus’ ears,
That Mistick town was taken unawares.
Three hundred of his able men he sent,
With utmost haste its ruin to prevent:        550
But if for that they chance to come too late,
Like harms on us they should retaliate.
  These, with loud outcries, met us coming down
The hill, about three furlongs from the town;
Gave us a skirmish, and then turn’d to gaze        555
Upon the ruin’d city yet on blaze.
  But when they saw this doleful tragedy,
The sorrow of their hearts did close their eye:
Silent and mute they stand, yet breathe out groans;
Nor Gorgon’s head like this transforms to stones.        560
Here lay the numerous bodies of the dead;
Some frying, others almost calcined:
All dolefully imprison’d underneath
The dark and adamantine bars of death.
  But mighty sorrows never are content,        565
Long to be kept in close imprisonment;
When once grew desperate, will not keep under,
But break all bands of their restraint asunder.
And now with shrieks the echoing air they wound,
And stamp’d and tore and curst the suffering ground.        570
Some with their hands tore off their guiltless hair,
And throw up dust and cinders in the air.
Thus with strange actions and horrendous cries,
They celebrate these doleful obsequies.
At length revenge so vehemently doth burn,        575
As caused all other passions to adjourn.
Alecto raves and rates them in the ear,
‘O sensless cowards, to stand blubbering here!
Will tears revive these bodies of the slain,
Or bring their ashes back to life again?        580
Will tears appease their mighty ghosts, that are
Hoping to be revenged, hovering here?
Surely expecting you will sacrifice
To them the lives of those their enemies:
And will you baffle them thus by delay,        585
Until the enemy be gone away?
O cursed negligence!’ And then she strips,
And jirks and stings them with her scorpion whips;
Until with anger and revenge they yell,
As if the very fiends had broke up hell.        590
That we shall die, they all outrageous swear,
And vomit imprecations in the air:
Then, full speed! with ejulations loud,
They follow us like an impetuous cloud.
  Mason, to stop their violent career,        595
Rallies his company anew to war;
Who finding them within a little space,
Let fly his blunderbusses in their face.
Thick sulphurous smoke makes the sky look black,
And heaven’s high galleries thunder with the crack.        600
Earth groans and trembles, and from underneath,
Deep vaulted caverns horrid echoes breathe.
  The volley that our men first made,
Struck down their stout file leaders dead.
To see them fall, a stupifying fear        605
Surpris’d and stop’d their soldiers in the rear:
The numerous natives stop’d, and fac’d about;
Whereat the conquering English gave a shout.
At which they start, and through the forest scour,
Like trembling hinds that hear the lions roar.        610
  Back to great Sasacus they now return again;
And of their loss they thus aloud complain,
‘Sir, ’tis in vain to fight: The fates engage
Themselves for those with whom this war we wage.
We Mistick burning saw, and ’twas an awful sight;        615
As dreadful are our enemies in fight:
And the loud thunderings that their arms did make,
Made us, the earth, yea heaven itself, to shake.’
  Very unwelcome to Sasacus’ ears
Were these misfortunes, and his subject’s fears:        620
Yet to his men, the English he contemns,
And threats to ruin us with stratagems.
And now his thoughts ten thousand ways divide,
And swift through all imaginations glide.
Endless projections in his head he lays,        625
Deep policies and stratagems he weighs.
Sometimes he thinks, he ’ll thus the war maintain,
Reviews the scheme, and throws it by again:
Now thus, or thus, concludes ’tis best to do;
But neither thus, nor thus, on the review.        630
And thus his mind on endless projects wanders,
Till he is lost in intricate meanders.
At last gives up the case as desperate,
And sinks, bewailing his forlorn estate.
  He and his people quite discouraged,        635
Now leave their seats, and towards Monhattons fled.
But in his way the English sword o’ertakes
His camp, and in it sad massacres makes.
Yet he escap’d, and to the Mohawks goes,
Where he to them keeps reckoning up his woes:        640
And they to cure the passions of his breast,
Cut off his head, and all his cares released.
 
 
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