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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.

  O virgin breast with lilies white,
    O sun-burned hand that bore the lance,
  You taught the prayer that helps men to unite,
  You brought the courage equal to the fight,
          You gave a heart to France!

  Your king was crowned, your country free,
    At Rheims you had your soul’s desire: 
  And then, at Rouen, maid of Domremy,
  The black-robed judges gave your victory
          The martyr’s crown of fire.

  And now again the times are ill,
    And doubtful leaders miss the mark;
  The people lack the single faith and will
  To make them one,—­your country needs you still,—­
          Come back again, Jeanne d’Arc!

  O woman-star, arise once more
    And shine to bid your land advance: 
  The old heroic trust in God restore,
  Renew the brave, unselfish hopes of yore,
          And give a heart to France!

Paris, July, 1909.

NATIONAL MONUMENTS

  Count not the cost of honour to the dead! 
    The tribute that a mighty nation pays
    To those who loved her well in former days
  Means more than gratitude for glories fled;
  For every noble man that she hath bred,
    Lives in the bronze and marble that we raise,
    Immortalised by art’s immortal praise,
  To lead our sons as he our fathers led.

  These monuments of manhood strong and high
    Do more than forts or battle-ships to keep
  Our dear-bought liberty.  They fortify
    The heart of youth with valour wise and deep;
  They build eternal bulwarks, and command
  Immortal hosts to guard our native land.

February, 1905.

THE MONUMENT OF FRANCIS MAKEMIE

(Presbyter of Christ in America, 1683-1708)

  To thee, plain hero of a rugged race,
    We bring the meed of praise too long delayed! 
    Thy fearless word and faithful work have made
  For God’s Republic firmer resting-place
  In this New World:  for thou hast preached the grace
    And power of Christ in many a forest glade,
    Teaching the truth that leaves men unafraid
  Of frowning tyranny or death’s dark face.

  Oh, who can tell how much we owe to thee,
    Makemie, and to labour such as thine,
    For all that makes America the shrine
  Of faith untrammelled and of conscience free? 
  Stand here, gray stone, and consecrate the sod
  Where rests this brave Scotch-Irish man of God!

April, 1908.

THE STATUE OF SHERMAN BY ST. GAUDENS

  This is the soldier brave enough to tell
  The glory-dazzled world that ‘war is hell’: 
  Lover of peace, he looks beyond the strife,
  And rides through hell to save his country’s life.

April, 1904.

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