Wednesday, April 15, 2009

THE JOYS OF THE ROAD

Carman, Bliss, (1861-1929)

(My friend Molly showed me this poem, and there are a few verses that she said reminded her of me, starting with 'a lover of books', and my heart took it as a true, deep compliment.)

Now the joys of the road are chiefly these
A crimson touch on the hard-wood trees;

A vagrant's morning wide and blue,
In early fall, when the wind walks, too;

A shadowy highway cool and brown,
Alluring up and enticing down

The outward eye, the quiet will,
And the striding heart from hill to hill;

Asking nothing, revealing naught,
But minting his words from a fund of thought,

A keeper of silence eloquent,
Needy, yet royally well content,

A lover of books, but a reader of man,
No cynic and no charlatan,

Who never defers and never demands,
But, smiling, takes the world in his hands,--

Seeing it good as when God first saw
And gave it the weight of his will for law.

And O the joy that is never won,
But follows and follows the journeying sun,

The racy smell of the forest loam,
When the stealthy, sad-heart leaves go home;

(O leaves, O leaves, I am one with you,
Of the mould and the sun and the wind and the dew!)

The broad gold wake of the afternoon;
The silent fleck of the cold new moon;

With only another league to wend;
And two brown arms at the journey's end!

These are the joys of the open road--
For him who travels without a load.

1 comment:

Orion Pahl... said...

I am contemplating writing this on some fabric and stitching it inside my MEND bag.