The Mississippi

Edward Reynolds

The Mississippi of the North! bright stream
On whose fair bosom first of all their race,
Marquette and Joliet float, and fondly dream
Of empires new and heathen brought to grace,
How pride and wonder lighted up each face
While down the stream the brave explorers sped,
Marking the devious windings as they trace
The noble river's wood-environed bed
To where Missouri's waves the gentle waters wed.

Untamed and restless river! in thy bed,
From Cape Girardeau to the delta's verge,
Vibrating waywardly; thy wild waves fed
With spoil of shores down-fallen in the surge,
And floating forests, which thy waters urge
In endless drift into the distant sea,
Where thou and all thy hundred confluents merge;
In thy long reaching flow still shalt thou be
From man's restraining masonry forever free!