Sonnet to Mr Jefferson
written in 1822
Immortal man! not only of thine own
The best and greatest, but of every age;
Thou whose meridian strength was prompt to wage
For liberty the war against a throne!
When thy gigantic mind had plac’d thee lone
And high, thou didst controul the wildest rage
Of rival factions—scorning to assuage;
To thee all Nature’s mysteries are known:
Oh! how shall we of less etherial mould
Address our souls to thine? thy greatness weigh’d
Our love were too familiar and too bold;
Thy goodness, admiration were too cold;
But both united in men’s hearts have made
A monument whose glory shall not fade.
NcU: Nicholas Philip Trist Papers.