Henry Pickering (1781-1838)

"Henry Pickering wrote sixteen well-constructed sonnets, twelve in the Italian form. The most interesting is reprinted." (Sterner)

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American Painters

Thou sleep'st in marble now, O West! still first
Upon the roll of fame thy name appears;
Thy name, decreed to reach the latest years,
Despite the taint of envious breath accurst.
And Copley, too, thy spirit proud hast burst!--
But turn we to the living: bright compeers.
Our Stuart, Allston! ripe of age, time sears
Not that; this burns with an immortal thirst.
Who next shall follow in the march of time?
See Trumbull, anxious for a deathless name!
See Vanderlyn, see ardent Sully, climb!
And Leslie, Newton, tread the paths of fame!
Urge then the generous race, ye chosen few;
And let Apelles, Raphael, live in you.

(Text from The Sonnet in American Literature.)