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Carolina Chansons
Legends of the Low Country

written by "Heyward, DuBose, 1885-1940"
...stles, I have seen the brown marsh tackies, Hiding in the swamps at Kiawah, With the gray mosquito patches Gory on their shaggy thatches. Balky, vicious, and degenerates, They are small as Spanish jennets, But their sires were with El Tarab, When he conquered Andalusia For the Prophet and the Arab; And they came with Ponce de Leon, When the Spaniard made a peon And a Christian of the Carib. Peering from palmetto thickets At some fort's coquina wickets, Startled Indians saw them grazing, Thunder-stamping and amazing As the beasts from other stars, When they galloped down savannas, And their masters seemed centaurs With the new white metal blazing. [113] Thus they came, these little beasts, With the men-at-arms and priests, In the west with Coronado When he reached the Colorado, In the east with bold De Soto In the search for El Dorado, And they packed the bells and toys That the chieftains loved like boys; Struggling through the swamps and briars After dons and tonsured friars; Dying in the forests dismal, Till the shrill of silver clarion Brought the buzzards to the carrion Round the smoke of lonely fires In a continent abysmal. So De Soto left them dying, Heedless of their human crying; Here he turned them loose to die Underneath a foreign sky; But they lived on thicket dross, On the leaves and Spanish moss— And I wonder, and I wonder, When I hear the startled thunder Of their hoofs die down the reaches Of these Carolina beaches. H.A. [12] See the note at the back of the book. [114] BACK RIVER "Medway Plantation" Back River! What a name For yesterdays come back again today, Reborn to be tomorrows still the same— A landgrave built it when the English came; Then men made houses well With cunning hands. And service wore a nearer, feudal guise— Witness the stone where "Rose, A faithful servant," lies. Parnassus stretches east, beyond that The plantation once called A...

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