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poet

William Ralph Emerson

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William Ralph Emerson, born in 1833, was an architect and the second cousin of Ralph Waldo Emerson. He worked to design several of the first buildings for the National Zoo in Washington, D.C. He died in Milton, Massachusetts, in 1917.

by this poet

poem
What makes a nation's pillars high
And its foundations strong?
What makes it mighty to defy
The foes that round it throng?

It is not gold. Its kingdoms grand
Go down in battle shock;
Its shafts are laid on sinking sand,
Not on abiding rock.

Is it the sword? Ask the red dust
Of empires passed away;
The blood