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I thought upon thy boundless woods,
Thy prairies broad and lone,--
I thought upon thy rushing floods,
Thy cataracts' thunder-tone,--
On valleys, 'midst whose summer pride
Man's foot hath never been,
On cities rising, white and wide,
Amidst the forest green;
I sent my heart to many a nook
Beyond the western waves;
Strange, that its dreams should overlook
The places of thy graves!
I thought upon the Indian race,
Those phantoms of the past,
Following, unchecked, the patient chase,
Through forests, drear and vast;
I thought of all thy mighty ones,
The giants of their time,
Whose names their country proudly owns
Eternal, and sublime.
But of the myriads in their shrouds
Beside thy cities spread,--
I thought not of those nameless crowds,
Thy tribes of lowlier dead!
A shadow comes upon my dream,
Land of fair trees and flowers!
O'er thee hath swept death's mighty stream,
As o'er this isle of ours;
Like hers, thy children have been wrung
With partings, day by day;
Vain tears have poured, vain prayers have sprung,
Beside the senseless clay.
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