The Indian Burying Ground
In spite of all the learn'd have said;
I still my old opinion keep,
The posture, that we give the dead,
Points out the soul's eternal sleep.
Not so the ancients of these lands --
The Indian, when from life releas'd
Again is seated with his friends,
And shares gain the joyous feast.
His imag'd birds, and painted bowl,
And ven'son, for a journey dress'd,
Bespeak the nature of the soul,
Activity, that knows no rest.
His bow, for action ready bent,
And arrows, with a head of stone,
Can only mean that life is spent,
And not the finer essence gone.
Thou, stranger, that shalt come this way.
No fraud upon the dead commit --
Observe the swelling turf, and say
They do not lie, but here they sit.
Here still lofty rock remains,
On which the curious eye may trace,
(Now wasted, half, by wearing rains)
The fancies of a older race.
Here still an aged elm aspires,
Beneath whose far -- projecting shade
(And which the shepherd still admires
The children of the forest play'd!
There oft a restless Indian queen
(Pale Shebah, with her braided hair)
And many a barbarous form is seen
To chide the man that lingers there.
By midnight moons, o'er moistening dews,
In habit for the chase array'd,
The hunter still the deer pursues,
The hunter and the deer, a shade!
And long shall timorous fancy see
The painted chief, and pointed spear,
And reason's self shall bow the knee
To shadows and delusions here.
Philip Freneau's Other Poems
Read this poem in other languages
This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.
Comments about this poem (The Indian Burying Ground by Philip Freneau )
(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(10 December 1830 – 15 May 1886)
William Butler Yeats
(13 June 1865 – 28 January 1939)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
(1 February 1902 – 22 May 1967)
(16 August 1920 – 9 March 1994)
Edgar Allan Poe
(19 January 1809 - 7 October 1849)
(30 December 1865 – 18 January 1936)
- Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
- The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
- Phenomenal Woman, Maya Angelou
- If, Rudyard Kipling
- Dreams, Langston Hughes
- If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
- I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings, Maya Angelou
- Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, Robert Frost
- Annabel Lee, Edgar Allan Poe
- Lament (O how all things are far removed), Rainer Maria Rilke
Poem of the Day
- Show Your Love, Lawrence S. Pertillar
- Time Is Of Love, Naveed Akram
- The Wings Of Time, Noah Body
- Passing By The Pond, Tony Adah
- Ode to Now, David Whalen
- The Girl and her Dragon, Kevin Maroney
- What is Life, Andrea Cortesi
- UFC 183: Watch Anderson Silva vs Nick Di.., Renz Barns
- The Dark Side, Sandra Feldman
- Chasing Constellations, Russell Nero