Song of the Decanter

Another temperance themed concrete poem.

Previous examples:  The Wine Glass and Shun the Bottle.

I  transcribed  this poem (without the shape)  because the copy is pretty poor and thought it might be easier to read:


There was an old Decanter,
and its mouth was gaping wide;
the rosy wine had ebbed away
and left its crystal side;
and the wind went humming;
humming, up and down the wind it blew,
and through the reed like hollow neck
the wildest notes it blew.
I placed it in the window,
where the blast was blowing free,
and fancied that its pale mouth sang
the queerest strains to me:
“They tell me — puny conquerors!
the Plague has slain his ten,
and War his hundred thousand
of the very best of men;
but I (’twas thus the bottle spoke,)
but I have conquered more
than all your famous conquerors,
so feared and famed of yore.
Then come we youths and maidens all;
come drink from out my cup,
the beverage that dulls the brains
and burns the spirits up;
that puts to shame your conquerors
that slay their scores below;
for this has deluged millions
with the la???t?de of wo. [I can’t make that word out]
Though in the path of battles
darkest streams of blood may roll;
yet while I kill the body,
I damn the very soul.
The cholera, the plague, the sword,
such ruin never wro’t, as I,
in mirth or malice,
on the innocent HAVE BROUGHT.”

Sheboygan Mercury (Sheboygan, Wisconsin) Nov 3, 1849

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