Monday, February 10, 2014

"A New Song" (1788)

A new S O N G.

TEN years, like Troy, my stubborn heart,

        Withstood th' assault of fond desire;

But now, alas! I feel a smart,

        Poor I, like Troy, am set on fire.

With care we may a pile secure,

        And from all common sparks defend;

But oh! who can a house secure,

        When the celestial flames descend?

Thus was I safe, till from your eyes

        Destructive fires are brightly given;

Ah! who can shun the warm surprise,

        When lo! the lightning comes from heaven.

The Federal Herald. May 26, 1788

The Federal Herald was published in Lansingburgh. Troy, New York, directly south of Lansingburgh, wasn't named "Troy" until about a year after the above poem was published. Whether anyone remembered it at that time, who could say?

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