An American Tale Poem Rhyme Scheme and Analysis


Ah pity all the pangs I feelA
If pity e'er ye knewB
An aged father's wounds to healA
Through scenes of death I flewB
Perhaps my hast'ning steps are vainC
Perhaps the warrior diesD
Yet let me soothe each parting painC
Yet lead me where he liesD
Thus to the list'ning band she callsE
Nor fruitless her desireF
They lead her panting to the wallsE
That hold her captive sireF
And is a daughter come to blessG
These aged eyes once moreH
Thy father's pains will now be lessG
His pains will now be o'erF
My father by this waning lampI
Thy form I faintly traceJ
Yet sure thy brow is cold and dampI
And pale thy honour'd faceJ
In vain thy wretched child is comeK
She comes too late to saveL
And only now can share thy doomM
And share thy peaceful graveL
Soft as amid the lunar beamsN
The falling shadows bendO
Upon the bosom of the streamsN
So soft her tears descendO
Those tears a father ill can bearP
He lives my child for theeQ
A gentle youth with pitying careP
Has lent his aid to meQ
Born in the western world his handR
Maintains its hostile causeS
And fierce against Britannia's bandR
His erring sword he drawsT
Yet feels the captive Briton's woeU
For his ennobled mindV
Forgets the name of Britain's foeU
In love of human kindV
Yet know my child a dearer tieW
Has link'd his heart to mineX
He mourns with Friendship's holy sighW
The youth belov'd of thineX
But hark his welcome feet are nearY
Thy rising grief suppressG
By darkness veil'd he hastens hereZ
To comfort and to blessG
Stranger for that dear father's sakeA2
She cried in accents mildB2
Who lives by thy kind pity takeA2
The blessings of his childB2
O if in heaven my EDWARD'S breastC2
This deed of mercy knewB
That gives my tortur'd bosom restC2
He sure would bless thee tooB
Ah tell me where my lover fellD2
The fatal scene recallE2
His last dear accents stranger tellD2
O haste and tell me allE2
Say if he gave to love the sighW
That set his spirit freeQ
Say did he raise his closing eyeW
As if it sought for meQ
Ask not her father cried to knowU
What known were added painC
Nor think my child the tale of woeU
Thy softness can sustainC
Though every joy with EDWARD fledF2
When EDWARD'S friend is nearY
It soothes my breaking heart she saidF2
To tell those joys were dearY
The western ocean roll'd in vainC
Its parting waves betweenG2
My EDWARD brav'd the dang'rous mainC
And bless'd our native sceneG2
Soft Isis heard his artless taleH2
Ah stream for ever dearY
Whose waters as they pass'd the valeH2
Receiv'd a lover's tearP
How could a heart that virtue lov'dI2
And sure that heart is mineX
Lamented youth behold unmov'dJ2
The virtues that were thineX
Calm as the surface of the lakeA2
When all the winds are stillK2
Mild as the beams of morning breakA2
When first they light the hillK2
So calm was his unruffled soulL2
Where no rude passion stroveM2
So mild his soothing accents stoleL2
Upon the ear of loveN2
Where are the dear illusions fledF2
Which sooth'd my former hoursO2
Where is the path that fancy spreadF2
Ah vainly spread with flowersO2
I heard the battle's fearful soundsP2
They seem'd my lover's knellD2
I heard that pierc'd with ghastly woundsQ2
My vent'rous lover fellD2
My sorrows shall with life endureR2
For he I lov'd is goneS2
But something tells my heart that sureR2
My life will not be longT2
My panting soul can bear no moreH
The youth impatient criedU2
'Tis EDWARD bids thy griefs be o'erF
My love my destin'd brideU2
The life which Heav'n preserv'd how blestC2
How fondly priz'd by meQ
Since dear to my AMELIA'S breastC2
Since valued still by theeQ
My father saw my constant painC
When thee I left behindV
Nor longer will his power restrainC
The ties my soul would bindV
And soon thy honor'd sire shall ceaseV2
The captive's lot to bearP
And we my love will soothe to peaceV2
His griefs with filial careP
Then come for ever to my soulL2
AMELIA come and proveW2
How calm our blissful years will rollL2
Along a life of loveN2

Helen Maria Williams


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