His eyes are bright as burnished steel,
His note a quick, defiant cry;
Harsh as a hinge his grating squeal
Sounds from the keen wind sweeping by.
Rains never dim his smooth blue coat,
The cold winds never trouble him,
No fog puts hoarseness in his throat,
Or makes his merry eyes grow dim.
His call at dawning is a shout,
His wing is subject to his heart;
Of fear he knows not—doubt
Did not draw his sailing-chart.
He is an universal emigre,
His foot is set in every land;
He greets me by gray Casco Bay
And laughs across the Texas sand.
In heat or cold, in storm and sun,
He lives undauntedly; and when he dies,
He folds his feet up one by one
And turns his last look on the skies.
He is the true American. He fears
No journey and no wood or wall—
And in the desert, toiling voyagers
Take heart or courage from his jocund call.