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Anti-Slavery Poems
To Delaware

by John Greenleaf Whittier

Written during the discussion in the Legislature of that State, in the
winter of 1846-47, of a bill for the abolition of slavery.

Thrice welcome to thy sisters of the East,
To the strong tillers of a rugged home,
With spray-wet locks to Northern winds released,
And hardy feet o'erswept by ocean's foam;
And to the young nymphs of the golden West,
Whose harvest mantles, fringed with prairie bloom,
Trail in the sunset,--O redeemed and blest,
To the warm welcome of thy sisters come!
Broad Pennsylvania, down her sail-white bay
Shall give thee joy, and Jersey from her plains,
And the great lakes, where echo, free alway,
Moaned never shoreward with the clank of chains,
Shall weave new sun-bows in their tossing spray,
And all their waves keep grateful holiday.
And, smiling on thee through her mountain rains,
Vermont shall bless thee; and the granite peaks,
And vast Katahdin o'er his woods, shall wear
Their snow-crowns brighter in the cold, keen air;
And Massachusetts, with her rugged cheeks
O'errun with grateful tears, shall turn to thee,
When, at thy bidding, the electric wire
Shall tremble northward with its words of fire;
Glory and praise to God! another State is free!

1847.
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