The Poems of Henry Van Dyke eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 381 pages of information about The Poems of Henry Van Dyke.

* * * * *

  And love!—­I often dream of that—­the treasure of the earth;
  How little they who use the coin have realised its worth! 
  ’Twill pay all debts, enrich all hearts, and make all joys secure. 
  But love, to do its perfect work, must be sincere and pure.

  My heart is full of virgin gold.  I’ll pour it out and spend
  My hidden wealth with open hand on all who call me friend. 
  Not one shall miss the kindly deed, the largess of relief,
  The generous fellowship of joy, the sympathy of grief.

  I’ll say the loyal, helpful things that make life sweet and fair,
  I’ll pay the gratitude I owe for human love and care. 
  Perhaps I’ve been at fault sometimes—­I’ll ask to be forgiven,
  And make this little room of mine seem like a bit of heaven.

  For one by one I’ll call my friends to stand beside my bed;
  I’ll speak the true and tender words so often left unsaid;
  And every heart shall throb and glow, all coldness melt away
  Around my altar-fire of love—­ah, give me but one day!

* * * * *

  What’s that?  I’ve had another day, and wasted it again? 
  A priceless day in empty dreams, another chance in vain? 
  Thou fool—­this night—­it’s very dark—­the last—­this choking breath—­
  One prayer—­have mercy on a dreamer’s soul—­God, this is death!


  It pleased the Lord of Angels (praise His name!)
  To hear, one day, report from those who came
  With pitying sorrow, or exultant joy,
  To tell of earthly tasks in His employ. 
  For some were grieved because they saw how slow
  The stream of heavenly love on earth must flow;
  And some were glad because their eyes had seen,
  Along its banks, fresh flowers and living green. 
  At last, before the whiteness of the throne
  The youngest angel, Asmiel, stood alone;
  Nor glad, nor sad, but full of earnest thought,
  And thus his tidings to the Master brought
  “Lord, in the city Lupon I have found
  Three servants of thy holy name, renowned
  Above their fellows.  One is very wise,
  With thoughts that ever range beyond the skies;
  And one is gifted with the golden speech
  That makes men gladly hear when he will teach;
  And one, with no rare gift or grace endued,
  Has won the people’s love by doing good. 
  With three such saints Lupon is trebly blest;
  But, Lord, I fain would know, which loves Thee best?”
  Then spake the Lord of Angels, to whose look
  The hearts of all are like an open book: 
  “In every soul the secret thought I read,
  And well I know who loves me best indeed. 
  But every life has pages vacant still,
  Whereon a man may write the thing he will;
  Therefore I read the record, day by day,

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