Thursday, December 22, 2016

A BALLAD OF A DRUM, a poem

THE Austrians at Arcola
     (The fight had lasted long),
The Austrians at Arcola—
     Some fifty thousand strong—
Assailed the bridge whereto the French
     (A fourth their strength) had come,
With menace dire, and murderous fire;
     Then fled before a drum!

For Estienne at Arcola—
     Heroic little lad!—
Seeing the carnage on the bridge,
     With soul grown sick and sad,
Had sworn that he, at least, would pass
     Beyond the sanguine tide,
And beat his drum, whate'er should come,
     Upon the farther side.

So Estienne at Arcola—
     No fear had he to die!—
With one brave Sergeant, swam the stream,
     His precious drum held high,
And from the river dripping rose
     Amid the battle's hum,
A French refrain, with might and main,
     To pound upon his drum.

The Austrians at Arcola
     Seemed fifty thousand strong,
But many were the raw recruits
     Among that mighty throng,
Who hearing Frenchmen in the rear,
     Listened, confused and dumb,
Then gave a shout,—"We're hemmed about!"
     And fled—before a drum!

The courage shown at Arcola
     By AndrĂ© Estienne—
The lesson taught at Arcola
     Is wholesome now as then.
Needs there a moral to the tale?
     Then read in this its sum:
The greatest strength may yield at length,
     When sounds a hero's drum!
"A Battle of a Drum" by Florence Earle Coates. Published as "The Battle of a Drum" in The Delineator (December 1904), and as "A Battle of a Drum" in Mine and Thine (1904) and Poems (1916) Volume I.

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

TO HORACE HOWARD FURNESS, a dedicatory poem

With kind and cruel ministries
     Nature assays her metals fine,
And Heaven, bestowing joys and griefs
     With equal hand benign,
Attempers what it holds most dear—
Adds now a smile and now a tear,
     Till it creates with touch divine
     A soul like thine, a soul like thine!—
Ever to loftiest counsels moved,
By all men honoured, and by all beloved.
"To Horace Howard Furness" by Florence Earle Coates. Dedicatory poem from The Unconquered Air and Other Poems (1912).

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Mine and Thine: a new project at LibriVox.org

LibriVox.org has posted a new project, Mine and Thine by Florence Earle Coates. Link here to check out its progress or contribute your voice! Past LibriVox.org projects have included recordings of Coates' "Near and Far" and "October."