DEMOCRACY POEMS

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Freedom's Plow

When a man starts out with nothing,
When a man starts out with his hands
Empty, but clean,
When a man starts to build a world,
.....
Langston Hughes

Langston Hughes
Democracy

Democracy will not come
Today, this year
Nor ever
Through compromise and fear.
.....
Langston Hughes

Langston Hughes
Is This Democracy

*IS THIS DEMOCRACY?*

Even in the mist of griefs and pains,
When the story shall be divulged,
.....
Paciolo Pen Saint

Paciolo Pen Saint
Young Democracy

HARK! Young Democracy from sleep
Our careless sentries raps:
A backwash from the Futureâ??s deep
Our Evilâ??s foreland laps.
.....

Bernard O'dowd
Absalom And Achitophel

In pious times, ere priest-craft did begin,
Before polygamy was made a sin;
When man, on many, multipli'd his kind,
Ere one to one was cursedly confin'd:
.....
John Dryden

John Dryden
September 1, 1939

I sit in one of the dives
On Fifty-second Street
Uncertain and afraid
As the clever hopes expire
.....
W. H. Auden

W. H. Auden
John Cabanis

Neither spite, fellow citizens,
Nor forgetfulness of the shiftlessness,
And the lawlessness and waste
Under democracy's rule in Spoon River
.....
Edgar Lee Masters

Edgar Lee Masters
The Wild Knight

A dark manor-house shuttered and unlighted, outlined against a pale
sunset: in front a large, but neglected, garden. To the right, in the
foreground, the porch of a chapel, with coloured windows lighted. Hymns
within.
.....
G. K. Chesterton

G. K. Chesterton
Mediums

THEY shall arise in the States,
They shall report Nature, laws, physiology, and happiness;
They shall illustrate Democracy and the kosmos;
They shall be alimentive, amative, perceptive;
.....
Walt Whitman

Walt Whitman
Common Cold

Go hang yourself, you old M.D.!
You shall not sneer at me.
Pick up your hat and stethoscope,
Go wash your mouth with laundry soap;
.....

Ogden Nash
Democracy

Democracy is this-to hold
That all who wander down the pike
In cart or car, on foot or bike,
Or male or female, young or old,
.....

Alice Duer Miller
Democracy

BEARER of Freedom's holy light,
Breaker of Slavery's chain and rod,
The foe of all which pains the sight,
Or wounds the generous ear of God!
.....
John Greenleaf Whittier

John Greenleaf Whittier
The Great God Guff

There was once a Simple People - (you, of course, will understand
This is just a little fable of a non-existent land)
There was once a Simple People, and they had a Simple King,
And his name - well, SMITH the First will do as well as anything
.....

Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis
To John Ruskin

(After reading his 'Modern Painters')
YES, you do well to mock us, you
Who knew our bitter woe â??
To jeer the false, deny the true
.....

Francis William Lauderdale Adams
Daisies

In the democracy of daisies
every blossom has one vote.
The question on the ballot is
Does he love me?
.....

Connie Wanek
Eidà³lons

I MET a Seer,
Passing the hues and objects of the world,
The fields of art and learning, pleasure, sense,
To glean Eidólons.
.....
Walt Whitman

Walt Whitman
The Sage

Sequoia, growing grandly
Out of the long ago,
Beloved of Time, whose sons
March by to measures slow,
.....
Harriet Monroe

Harriet Monroe
Hey Nelly Nelly

Hey Nelly Nelly, come to the window
Hey Nelly Nelly look at what I see
He's riding into town on a sway back mule
Got a tall black hat and he looks like a fool
.....
Shel Silverstein

Shel Silverstein
The People, Yes

Lincoln?
He was a mystery in smoke and flags
Saying yes to the smoke, yes to the flags,
Yes to the paradoxes of democracy,
.....
Carl Sandburg

Carl Sandburg
Demos Ii

So little have you seen of what awaits
Your fevered glimpse of a democracy
Confused and foiled with an equality
Not equal to the envy it creates,
.....
Edwin Arlington Robinson

Edwin Arlington Robinson
Billy Of Queensland

â??Queensland,â? he heads his lettersâ??thatâ??s all:
The date, and the month, and the year in brief;
He often sends me a cheerful scrawl,
With an undertone of ancient grief.
.....
Henry Lawson

Henry Lawson
The Stars Go Over The Lonely Ocean

Unhappy about some far off things
That are not my affair, wandering
Along the coast and up the lean ridges,
I saw in the evening
.....

Robinson Jeffers
To America In 1915

We watch your attitudes with candid eyes:
Plain men are we, not given much to prate,
Bluntly sincere, keenly compassionate
But lions in our wrath at treacheries;
.....
Arthur Bayldon

Arthur Bayldon
Apostroph

O MATER! O fils!
O brood continental!
O flowers of the prairies!
O space boundless! O hum of mighty products!
.....
Walt Whitman

Walt Whitman
Demos

I

All you that are enamored of my name
And least intent on what most I require,
.....
Edwin Arlington Robinson

Edwin Arlington Robinson
A Jack-at-all-views

So, Estee, you are still alive! I thought
That you had died and were a blessed ghost
I know at least your coffin once was bought
With Railroad money; and 'twas said by most
.....

Ambrose Bierce
The Griefs Of Ancient Gosh

I happened in Gosh on an ancient day,
In the land of Glugs far, far away
Where the skies are green and the grass is pink
And the citizens rarely troubl'd to think.
.....

Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis
A Keynote [extract]

Heard, from the speaking stones that strew
The hillside of Success;
From spheres whose harmonies anew
Can those who listen bless;
.....

Bernard O'dowd
Bryan, Bryan, Bryan, Bryan

I

In a nation of one hundred fine, mob-hearted, lynching, relenting, repenting millions,
There are plenty of sweeping, swinging, stinging, gorgeous things to shout about,
.....
Vachel Lindsay

Vachel Lindsay
To A Southern Statesman

IS this thy voice whose treble notes of fear
Wail in the wind? And dost thou shake to hear,
Actæon-like, the bay of thine own hounds,
Spurning the leash, and leaping o'er their bounds?
.....
John Greenleaf Whittier

John Greenleaf Whittier
The Great Pax Whitie

In the beginning was the word
And the word was
Death
And the word was nigger
.....

Nikki Giovanni
Kentucky

You, who are met to remember
Kentucky and give her praise;
Who have warmed your hearts at the ember
Of her love for many days!
.....
Madison Julius Cawein

Madison Julius Cawein
There Is A Country

There is a country

Where Graduates flood the labour market yearly,
With the hope of getting employed one day.
.....
Taofeeq B. Ajadi

Taofeeq B. Ajadi
Postcards

I'm thinking about you. What else can I say?
The palm trees on the reverse
are a delusion; so is the pink sand.
What we have are the usual
.....

Margaret Atwood
To A Politician

There was a moment when of you
A splendid hope I had to tell,
Believing 'Here is one man who
Will serve our waiting country well.'
.....

Edward George Dyson
To Walt Whitman In America

Send but a song oversea for us,
Heart of their hearts who are free,
Heart of their singer, to be for us
More than our singing can be;
.....
Algernon Charles Swinburne

Algernon Charles Swinburne
For Australia

Now, with the wars of the world begun, they'll listen to you and me,
Now while the frightened nations run to the arms of democracy,
Now, when our blathering fools are scared, and the years have proved us right â??
All unprovided and unprepared, the Outpost of the White!
.....
Henry Lawson

Henry Lawson
The Congressmen Came Out To See Bull Run

The congressmen came out to see Bull Run,
The congressmen who like free shows and spectacles.
They brought their wives and carriages along,
They brought their speeches and their picnic-lunch,
.....

Stephen Vincent Benét
I Was Looking A Long While

I WAS looking a long while for a clue to the history of the past for
myself, and for these chants--and now I have found it;
It is not in those paged fables in the libraries, (them I neither
accept nor reject;)
.....
Walt Whitman

Walt Whitman
The Answer

Men and boys, O fathers, brothers,
Burst these fetters round you bound.
Women, sisters, wives and mothers,
Lift your faces from the ground!
.....

Francis William Lauderdale Adams
Gold Leaves

Lo! I am come to autumn,
When all the leaves are gold;
Grey hairs and golden leaves cry out
The year and I are old.
.....

Gilbert Keith Chesterton
From The Minutes

When, with the force of a ram that discharges its ponderous body
Straight at the rear elevation of the luckless culler of simples,
The foot of Herculean Kilgore-statesman of surname suggestive
Or carnage unspeakable!-lit like a missile prodigious
.....

Ambrose Bierce
Eidolons

I met a seer,
Passing the hues and objects of the world,
The fields of art and learning, pleasure, sense,
To glean eidolons.
.....
Walt Whitman

Walt Whitman
The Poet's Apology

Our poet has never as yet
Esteemed it proper or fit
To detain you with a long
Encomiastic song
.....

Aristophanes
Millenial Hymn To Lord Shiva

Earth no longer
hymns the Creator,
the seven days of wonder,
the Garden is over â??
.....

Kathleen Jessie Raine
Song Of The Six Hundred M.p.'s

â??We are 'ere met together
in this momentous hower,
Ter lick th' bankers' dirty boots
an' keep the Bank in power.â??
.....
Ezra Pound

Ezra Pound
Democracy

Let slaves and subjects with unvaried psalms
Before their sovereign execute salaams;
The freeman scorns one idol to adore
Tom, Dick and Harry and himself are four.
.....

Ambrose Bierce
A Song

COME, I will make the continent indissoluble;
I will make the most splendid race the sun ever yet shone upon;
I will make divine magnetic lands,
With the love of comrades,
.....
Walt Whitman

Walt Whitman