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.

  Stand here, ye City College towers,
    And look both up and down;
  Remember all who wrought for you
    Within the toiling town;
  Remember all their hopes for you,
    And be the City’s Crown.

June, 1908.

MERCY FOR ARMENIA

I

THE TURK’S WAY

  Stand back, ye messengers of mercy!  Stand
    Far off, for I will save my troubled folk
    In my own way.  So the false Sultan spoke;
  And Europe, hearkening to his base command,
  Stood still to see him heal his wounded land. 
    Through blinding snows of winter and through smoke
    Of burning towns, she saw him deal the stroke
  Of cruel mercy that his hate had planned. 
  Unto the prisoners and the sick he gave
    New tortures, horrible, without a name;
      Unto the thirsty, blood to drink; a sword
    Unto the hungry; with a robe of shame
      He clad the naked, making life abhorred;
  He saved by slaughter, and denied a grave.

II

AMERICA’S WAY

  But thou, my country, though no fault be thine
    For that red horror far across the sea;
    Though not a tortured wretch can point to thee,
  And curse thee for the selfishness supine
  Of those great Powers that cowardly combine
    To shield the Turk in his iniquity;
    Yet, since thy hand is innocent and free,
  Arise, and show the world the way divine! 
  Thou canst not break the oppressor’s iron rod,
    But thou canst help and comfort the oppressed;
      Thou canst not loose the captive’s heavy chain,
      But thou canst bind his wounds and soothe his pain. 
    Armenia calls thee, Sovereign of the West,
  To play the Good Samaritan for God.

1896.

SICILY, DECEMBER, 1908

  O garden isle, beloved by Sun and Sea,
    Whose bluest billows kiss thy curving bays,
    Whose light infolds thy hills with golden rays,
  Filling with fruit each dark-leaved orange-tree,
  What hidden hatred hath the Earth for thee,
    That once again, in these dark, dreadful days,
    Breaks forth in trembling rage, and swiftly lays
  Thy beauty waste in wreck and agony! 
  Is Nature, then, a strife of jealous powers,
    And man the plaything of unconscious fate? 
      Not so, my troubled heart!  God reigns above,
  And man is greatest in his darkest hours. 
    Walking amid the cities desolate,
      Behold the Son of God in human love!

Tertius and Henry van Dyke.

“COME BACK AGAIN, JEANNE D’ARC”

  The land was broken in despair,
    The princes quarrelled in the dark,
  When clear and tranquil, through the troubled air
  Of selfish minds and wills that did not dare,
          Your star arose, Jeanne d’Arc.

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