Joseph Rodman Drake
Early American poet
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- When Freedom from her mountain-heights
Unfurled her standard to the air,
She tore the azure robe of night,
And set the stars of glory there.
She mingled with its gorgeous dyes
The milky baldric of the skies,
And striped its pure, celestial white
With streakings of the morning light.
Flag of the free, heart’s hope and home!
By angel hands to valour given!
Thy stars have lit the welkin dome,
And all thy hues were born in heaven.
Forever float that standard sheet!
Where breathes the foe, but falls before us,
With Freedom’s soil beneath our feet,
And Freedom’s banner streaming over us?
- "The American Flag", in The Culprit Fay and Other Poems (1835), published posthumously by Drake's daughter.