A Farewell to America

Phillis Wheatley

 
              I.
Adieu, New-England's smiling meads,
   Adieu, th' flow'ry plain:
I leave thine op'ning charms, O spring,
   And tempt the roaring main.
              II.
In vain for me the flow'rets rise,
   And boast their gaudy pride,
While here beneath the northern skies
   I mourn for health deny'd.
              III.
Celestial maid of rosy hue,
   Oh let me feel thy reign!
I languish till thy face I view,
   Thy vanish'd joys regain.
              IV.
Susannah mourns, nor can I bear
   To see the crystal shower
Or mark the tender falling tear
   At sad departure's hour;
              V.
Not regarding can I see
   Her soul with grief opprest
But let no sighs, no groans for me
   Steal from her pensive breast.
              VI.
In vain the feather'd warblers sing
   In vain the garden blooms
And on the bosom of the spring
   Breathes out her sweet perfumes.
              VII.
While for Britannia's distant shore
   We weep the liquid plain,
And with astonish'd eyes explore
   The wide-extended main.
              VIII.
Lo! Health appears! celestial dame!
   Complacent and serene,
With Hebe's mantle oe'r her frame,
   With soul-delighting mien.
              IX.
To mark the vale where London lies
   With misty vapors crown'd
Which cloud Aurora's thousand dyes,
   And veil her charms around.
              X.
Why, Phoebus, moves thy car so slow?
   So slow thy rising ray?
Give us the famous town to view,
   Thou glorious King of day!
              XI.
For thee, Britannia, I resign
   New-England's smiling fields;
To view again her charms divine,
   What joy the prospect yields!
              XII.
But thou! Temptation hence away,
   With all thy fatal train,
Nor once seduce my soul away,
   By thine enchanting strain.
              XIII.
Thrice happy they, whose heavenly shield
   Secures their souls from harm,
And fell Temptation on the field
   Of all its pow'r disarms.
 

Poems by This Author

His Excellency General Washington by Phillis Wheatley
Celestial choir! enthron'd in realms of light
On Being Brought from Africa to America by Phillis Wheatley
'Twas mercy brought me from my Pagan land,
To S.M., A Young African Painter, on Seeing His Works by Phillis Wheatley
To show the lab'ring bosom's deep intent
To the Right Honourable William, Earl of Dartmouth by Phillis Wheatley
HAIL, happy day, when, smiling like the morn


Further Reading

American Revolution
America, a Prophecy, Plates 3 and 4
by William Blake
A Nation's Strength
by Ralph Waldo Emerson
A Political Litany
by Philip Freneau
America
by Walt Whitman
American Liberty
by Philip Freneau
Daniel Boone
by Stephen Vincent Benét
England in 1819
by Percy Bysshe Shelley
His Excellency General Washington
by Phillis Wheatley
I Hear America Singing
by Walt Whitman
Occasioned by General Washington's Arrival in Philadelphia, On His Way to His Residence in Virginia
by Philip Freneau
On Being Brought from Africa to America
by Phillis Wheatley
Paul Revere's Ride
by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Poems of the American Revolution
Song of Myself, III
by Walt Whitman
The Star-Spangled Banner
by Francis Scott Key
To the Right Honourable William, Earl of Dartmouth
by Phillis Wheatley
When Lilacs Last in the Door-yard Bloom'd
by Walt Whitman