Green River





River, restless river,                                                    Naught was said but friendship,

            Going downward to the sea,                                       Why is this that all of her

Art thou telling me a secret                                        Thwarts my fancy like an houri

            Of what my life shall be?                                           To a Moslem worshiper.

In the wondrous future                                               River, on my vision

            Will I struggle and grow strong,                                 In the sunlight like a thread

Fighting foremost in the battle                                   Why recall these olden memories–

            ‘Gainst prejudice and wrong?                                    All the changed past is dead.

River, siren river,                                                        Onward to the future–

            I may do what hath been done,                                   Fancy smiles on either hand

Strong of heart and firm of purpose–                         Like a face with sun-set flushed

            And the fields of fame are won.                                 Looking to a golden land.

River, childhood’s river,                                             Flow on shining river,

            Though my sword write not my name                        In my soul thy song shall be

With the blood of civil warfare                                  Like Dreamland’s glorious

            On the muster rolls of fame.                                                               harmonies–

                                                                                                A long farewell to thee.

Greater are life’s conflicts,

            I must gird me for the strife,

For I hear the long-roll beating                                   LOUISVILLE, Ky., March, 1873

            On the tented fields of life.                             (From the Louisville Commercial)

Fashioned by the giver,                                              Copied from

            I must work his wonderous plan,                    The Lebanon (KY) Weekly Standard,

Add my current to the being                                       March 19, 1873, p. 2.

            Of the destiny of man.

River, happy river,

            Oh forgive this idle tear,

Other eyes shall kiss thy waters,

            Other feet shall wander here.

In the glorious spring time

            When the violets appear,

Will she, cherishing the memory

            Of my being, wander here.