Henry Abbey

(11 July 1842 - 7 June 1911 / Kingston, NY)

Henry Abbey
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Henry Abbey was an American poet who is best remembered for the poem, What do we plant when we plant a tree? He is also known for The Bedouin's Rebuke.

Style

In much of his work, Abbey displays traditional characteristics of the nineteenth century American poetic approach. He uses inversions and has fluid feel; his style takes notable influence from that of English poet James Henry Leigh Hunt. The Bedouin's Rebuke can be compared to Hunt's Abou Ben Adhem, which employs similar metric flow. Abbey was fond of simple subject matter, such as remorse or happiness; his poetry often forms an anecdote or short story which builds in intensity, reaches a climactic struggle ... more »

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Best Poem of Henry Abbey

Along The Nile

To G. W. C.
We journey up the storied Nile;
The timeless water seems to smile;
The slow and swarthy boatman sings;
The dahabëah spreads her wings;
We catch the breeze and sail away,
Along the dawning of the day,
Along the East, wherein the morn
Of life and truth was gladly born.

We sail along the past, and see
Great Thebes with Karnak at her knee.
To Isis and Osiris rise
The prayers and smoke of sacrifice.
'Mid rites of priests and pomp of kings
Again the seated Memnon sings.
We watch the palms along the shore,
And dream of what is here no ...

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