ON THE LIFE-MASK OF ABRAHAM LINCOLN
by: Richard Watson Gilder
bronze doth keep the very form and mold
- Of our great martyrs face. Yes, this is he:
- That brow all wisdom, all benignity;
- That human, humorous mouth; those cheeks that hold
- Like some harsh landscape all the summers gold;
- That spirit fit for sorrow, as the sea
- For storms to beat on; the lone agony
- Those silent, patient lips too well foretold.
- Yes, this is he who ruled a world of men
- As might some prophet of the elder day,--
- Brooding above the tempest and the fray
- With deep-eyed thought and more than mortal ken.
- A power was his beyond the touch of art
- Or arméd strength: It was his mighty heart.
MORE POEMS BY RICHARD WATSON GILDER
"On the Life-Mask of Abraham
Lincoln" is reprinted from The Century, vol. 33,
issue 1 (Nov 1886).