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The Flower of Liberty by Oliver Wendell Holmes

Analysis

"The Flower of Liberty" is a poem by Oliver Wendell Holmes. This is a patriotic poem about how the people of the United States are born free and given great liberty due to their ancestors. The poem speaks of "flower of liberty" as both a play on "Statue of Liberty" and the fact that the sight of flowers in the morning make the author realize how much liberty he has due to his ancestors.

"The Flower of Liberty" consists of five stanzas made up of eight lines each. The eight lines are rhymed as AABBCCCC. Each stanza is concluded with the line "The starry Flower of Liberty!"

Poem

The Flower of Liberty
By 

WHAT flower is this that greets the morn,
Its hues from Heaven so freshly born?
With burning star and flaming band
It kindles all the sunset land:
Oh tell us what its name may be,--
Is this the Flower of Liberty?
    It is the banner of the free,
    The starry Flower of Liberty!

In savage Nature's far abode
Its tender seed our fathers sowed;
The storm-winds rocked its swelling bud,
Its opening leaves were streaked with blood,
Till lo! earth's tyrants shook to see
The full-blown Flower of Liberty!
    Then hail the banner of the free,
    The starry Flower of Liberty!

Behold its streaming rays unite,
One mingling flood of braided light,--
The red that fires the Southern rose,
With spotless white from Northern snows,
And, spangled o'er its azure, see
The sister Stars of Liberty!
    Then hail the banner of the free,
    The starry Flower of Liberty!

The blades of heroes fence it round,
Where'er it springs is holy ground;
From tower and dome its glories spread;
It waves where lonely sentries tread;
It makes the land as ocean free,
And plants an empire on the sea!
    Then hail the banner of the free,
    The starry Flower of Liberty!

Thy sacred leaves, fair Freedom's flower,
Shall ever float on dome and tower,
To all their heavenly colors true,
In blackening frost or crimson dew,--
And God love us as we love thee,
Thrice holy Flower of Liberty!
    Then hail the banner of the free,
    The starry FLOWER OF LIBERTY

Written in 1861.

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