Saturday, November 28, 2009

Benjamin Franklin

By Steven Vincent Benet

Ben Franklin munched a loaf of bread,
While walking down the street,
And all the Philadelphia girls
Tee-heed to see him eat.
A country boy come up to town,
With eyes as big as saucers,
At the ladies in their furbelows,
The gempmun on their horses.

Ben Franklin wrote an almanac,
A smile upon his lip,
It told you when to plant your corn,
And how to cure the pip,
But he salted it and seasoned it,
With proverbs, sly and sage,
And the people read "Poor Richard,"
'Til Poor Richard was the rage.

Ben Franklin made a pretty kite,
And flew it in the air,
To call upon a thunder storm that happened to be there,
And all our humming dynamos and our electric light,
Go back to what Ben Franklin found
The Day he flew his kite.

Ben Franklin was the sort of man,
That people like to see,
For he was very clever, but as human as could be,
He had an eye for pretty girls,
A pallet for good wine,
And all the court of France were glad to ask him into dine.

But it didn't make him stuffy,
And he wasn't spoiled by fame,
But stayed Ben Franklin to the end,
As Yankee as his name.
"He wrenched their might from tyrants,
And its lightning from the sky,"
and oh, when he saw pretty girls he had a taking eye.

The End

I love this poem! It's really cute. Go Ben Franklin!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Old Ironsides

THE frigate Constitution, which had figured valiantly in the history of the United States navy, and had won the famous sea-fight with the English ship Guerriere in the War of 1812, was popularly called Old Ironsides, and had won a warm place in the hearts of the American people. On September 14, 1830, the Boston Daily Advertiser announced that the Secretary of the Navy had recommended that the Constitution be broken up, as no longer fit for service. As soon as he heard this Oliver Wendell Holmes wrote his poem Old Ironsides, which appeared two days later. It immediately became a battle-cry; was repeated all through the country; and caused such a wave of feeling for the time-scarred frigate that the plan of dismantling her was given up, and instead she was rebuilt, and given an honored place among the veterans of the country's navy.


by: Oliver Wendell Holmes (1809-1894)

Aye, tear her tattered ensign down!
Long has it waved on high,
And many an eye has danced to see
That banner in the sky;
Beneath it rung the battle shout,
And burst the cannon's roar;--
The meteor of the ocean air
Shall sweep the clouds no more!

Her deck, once red with heroes' blood,
Where knelt the vanquished foe,
When winds were hurrying o'er the flood
And waves were white below,
No more shall feel the victor's tread,
Or know the conquered knee;--
The harpies of the shore shall pluck
The eagle of the sea!

Oh, better that her shattered hulk
Should sink beneath the wave;
Her thunders shook the mighty deep,
And there should be her grave;
Nail to the mast her holy flag,
Set every threadbare sail,
And give her to the God of storms,--
The lightning of the gale!

It's kind of sad, isn't it?

Tony D.