Ambrose Bierce Poems

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Ambrose Bierce
Ambrose Gwinnett Bierce (June 24, 1842 – 1914(?)) was an American editorialist, journalist, short-story writer and satirist, today best known for his Devil's Dictionary. Bierce's lucid, unsentimental style has kept him popular when many of his contemporaries have been consigned to oblivion. His dark, sardonic views and vehemence as a critic earned him the nickname, "Bitter Bierce". Such was his reputation that it was said his judgment on any piece of prose or poetry could make or break a writer's career. Among the younger writers whom he encouraged were the poet George Sterling and the fiction writer W. C. Morrow. Ambrose Bierce. Portrait by J.H.E. Partington.Bierce was born in rural Meigs County, Ohio, and grew up in Kosciusko County, Indiana, attending high school at the county seat of Warsaw. He was the tenth of 13 children, whose father, Marcus Aurelius Bierce (1799-1876), gave all of them names beginning with the letter "A". In order of birth, the Bierce siblings were Abigail, Amelia, Ann, Addison, Aurelius, Augustus, Almeda, Andrew, Albert, Ambrose, Arthur, Adelia, and Aurelia. His mother, née Laura Sherwood, was a descendant of William Bradford. At the outset of the American Civil War, Bierce enlisted in the Union Army's 9th Regiment Indiana Infantry. In February 1862 he was commissioned first lieutenant, and served on the staff of General William Babcock Hazen as a topographical engineer, making maps of likely battlefields. Bierce fought at the Battle of Shiloh (April 1862), a terrifying experience that became a source for several later short stories and the memoir What I Saw of Shiloh. He continued fighting in the Western theater, at one point receiving newspaper attention for his daring rescue, under fire, of a gravely wounded comrade at the Battle of Rich Mountain, West Virginia. In June 1864 he sustained a serious head wound at the Battle of Kennesaw Mountain, and spent the rest of the summer on furlough, returning to active duty in September. He was discharged from the army in January 1865. His military career resumed, however, when in the summer of 1866 he rejoined General Hazen as part of the latter's expedition to inspect military outposts across the Great Plains. The expedition proceeded by horseback and wagon from Omaha, Nebraska, arriving toward year's end in San Francisco, California.

the echoing green
The sun does arise,
And make happy the skies.
The merry bells ring
To welcome the spr... [read poem]
auguries of innocence
To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower,
Hold Infinity in the palm... [read poem]
the fly
Little Fly
Thy summers play,
My thoughtless hand
Has brush'd away.

Am not ... [read poem]
the sick rose
O Rose, thou art sick!
The invisible worm
That flies in the night,
In the howling sto... [read poem]
with a book
Words shouting, singing, smiling, frowning---
Sense lacking.
Ah, nothing, more obsc... [read poem]
the lamb
Little Lamb, who made thee?
Dost thou know who made thee?
Gave thee life, and bid thee ... [read poem]
the tyger
Tyger! Tyger! Burning bright,
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
... [read poem]
Alone, adj. In bad company.

In contact, lo! the flint and steel,
By s... [read poem]
the divine image
Cruelty has a Human Heart,
And Jealousy a Human Face;
Terror the Human Form Divine,
A... [read poem]
I wander thro' each charter'd street,
Near where the charter'd Thames does flow,
And mark ... [read poem]
And did those feet in ancient time
Walk upon England's mountains green?
And was the holy L... [read poem]
the clod and the pebble
Love seeketh not Itself to please,
Nor for itself hath any care;
But for another gives its... [read poem]
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