The Poems of Henry Van Dyke eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 235 pages of information about The Poems of Henry Van Dyke.

Thou who hast made thy dwelling fair
With flowers below, above with starry lights
And set thine altars everywhere,—­
On mountain heights,
In woodlands dim with many a dream,
In valleys bright with springs,
And on the curving capes of every stream: 
Thou who hast taken to thyself the wings
Of morning, to abide
Upon the secret places of the sea,
And on far islands, where the tide
Visits the beauty of untrodden shores,
Waiting for worshippers to come to thee
In thy great out-of-doors! 
To thee I turn, to thee I make my prayer,
God of the open air.

II

Seeking for thee, the heart of man
Lonely and longing ran,
In that first, solitary hour,
When the mysterious power
To know and love the wonder of the morn
Was breathed within him, and his soul was born;
And thou didst meet thy child,
Not in some hidden shrine,
But in the freedom of the garden wild,
And take his hand in thine,—­
There all day long in Paradise he walked,
And in the cool of evening with thee talked.

III

Lost, long ago, that garden bright and pure,
Lost, that calm day too perfect to endure,
And lost the child-like love that worshipped and was sure! 
For men have dulled their eyes with sin,
And dimmed the light of heaven with doubt,
And built their temple walls to shut thee in,
And framed their iron creeds to shut thee out. 
But not for thee the closing of the door,
O Spirit unconfined! 
Thy ways are free
As is the wandering wind,
And thou hast wooed thy children, to restore
Their fellowship with thee,
In peace of soul and simpleness of mind.

IV

Joyful the heart that, when the flood rolled by,
Leaped up to see the rainbow in the sky;
And glad the pilgrim, in the lonely night,
For whom the hills of Haran, tier on tier,
Built up a secret stairway to the height
Where stars like angel eyes were shining clear. 
From mountain-peaks, in many a land and age,
Disciples of the Persian seer
Have hailed the rising sun and worshipped thee;
And wayworn followers of the Indian sage
Have found the peace of God beneath a spreading tree.

V

    But One, but One,—­ah, Son most dear,
  And perfect image of the Love Unseen,—­
    Walked every day in pastures green,
  And all his life the quiet waters by,
  Reading their beauty with a tranquil eye. 
  To him the desert was a place prepared
        For weary hearts to rest;
    The hillside was a temple blest;
    The grassy vale a banquet-room
  Where he could feed and comfort many a guest. 
        With him the lily shared
  The vital joy that breathes itself in

Copyrights
Project Gutenberg
The Poems of Henry Van Dyke from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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