Force and Freedom

O DOUBTLESS ye can trample and enchain,
Sow wrath and breathe out winter; but can ye
Persuade the muttering bondsman he is free,
Or with a signal build the summer again?
O, ye can hold the rivulets of the plain
A little while from nuptials with the sea,
But the fierce mountain-stream of Liberty
Not edicts and not hosts may long restrain.
For this is of the heights and of the deeps,
Born of the heights and in the deeps conceived.
This, from the lofty places of the mind,
Gushes pellucid, vehemently upheaved;
And tears and heart's blood hallow it, as it sweeps
Invincibly on, with Might no Might can bind.
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