Abraham Lincoln is tired in this poem.
November 6, 2009 8:03 PM   Subscribe

PoemFilter: They exhumed the bones of Lincoln in order to re-inter him elsewhere, and the former president spoke of being tired, tired of the packing and unpacking and packing again. Do you know the poem?

I recall reading many years ago a poem that was written by a witness to the final exhumation of Lincoln's body, which occurred during the process of moving his grave. The author recounts a soliloquy by Lincoln, during which he says that he is tired. It has been thirty years since I read the poem, but I would love to share it with my own children if I can find it.

Does it ring a bell for anyone?
posted by Slap Factory to Media & Arts (4 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Abraham Lincoln Walks At Midnight?
posted by essexjan at 3:47 AM on November 7, 2009

Not what you're looking for, but I love Whitman's When Lilacs Last in the Door-yard Bloom’d
posted by theora55 at 7:01 AM on November 7, 2009



Like Marlon Brando, but bigger.
You'll find that creature at the bottom of the deep down Susquehanna River.
This one I had stood right on up to me,
Tore out his hook and declared himself a prodigy.
But oh no, fishing ain't what it used to be.
I've seen some bad years, but this one is just killing me.
One little nibble in thirteen years,
I really pack 'em in.
This one I had, I seen it in dreams,
All shacked up with lightning and horizon beams.
Well I bring 'em on up, and then I pack 'em on in
In all the places I've been,
And I swear it's never been like this before,
Least not since 19 and 44.
But today, I made a sick discovery,
Lead box in Sassafras Cove.
Well I brought him on up and then I packed him on in, oh yes,
Now I'm really cashing in.
Wash of the Chesapeake and Appalachian Blue Range,
I have discovered the body of John Wilkes Booth.
Yes, it's true, I have Mr. Booth.
Everybody got to make a living somehow.
Do I hear a million?
Well I bring 'em on up and then I pack 'em on in.
posted by Area Control at 9:02 AM on November 7, 2009

Hmmm, no real luck - I wonder if it was by Whitman, I know he wrote about Lincoln a lot but can't find any evidence to support this particular verse being by him.

I found this by Carl Sandburg, but it's not it.

75. Cool Tombs

WHEN Abraham Lincoln was shoveled into the tombs, he forgot the copperheads and the assassin ... in the dust, in the cool tombs.

And Ulysses Grant lost all thought of con men and Wall Street, cash and collateral turned ashes ... in the dust, in the cool tombs.

Pocahontas' body, lovely as a poplar, sweet as a red haw in November or a pawpaw in May, did she wonder? does she remember?... in the dust, in the cool tombs?

Take any streetful of people buying clothes and groceries, cheering a hero or throwing confetti and blowing tin horns ... tell me if the lovers are losers ... tell me if any get more than the lovers ... in the dust ... in the cool tombs.
posted by multivalent at 11:11 AM on November 10, 2009

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