Dupont’s Round Fight (November, 1861)

By Herman Melville 1819–1891 Herman Melville
In time and measure perfect moves
      All Art whose aim is sure;
Evolving rhyme and stars divine
      Have rules, and they endure.

Nor less the Fleet that warred for Right,
      And, warring so, prevailed,
In geometric beauty curved,
      And in an orbit sailed.

The rebel at Port Royal felt
      The Unity overawe,
And rued the spell. A type was here,
      And victory of LAW.

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Poet Herman Melville 1819–1891

Subjects War & Conflict, Social Commentaries

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza

 Herman  Melville

Biography

Although chiefly known for his magisterial novel Moby-Dick and for other prose works, Herman Melville was also a fascinating poet who turned to the art after his serious fiction failed to find appreciative readers. His eccentric verse displays the complexity of thought and verbal richness of his novels, which has led some critics to rank him just below Walt Whitman and Emily Dickinson among 19th-century American poets.

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT War & Conflict, Social Commentaries

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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