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Best Famous Grasshopper Poems

Here is a collection of the all-time best famous Grasshopper poems. This is a select list of the best famous Grasshopper poetry. Reading, writing, and enjoying famous Grasshopper poetry (as well as classical and contemporary poems) is a great past time. These top poems are the best examples of grasshopper poems.

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12
Written by Andrew Barton Paterson | Create an image from this poem

A Ballad of Ducks

 The railway rattled and roared and swung 
With jolting and bumping trucks.
The sun, like a billiard red ball, hung In the Western sky: and the tireless tongue Of the wild-eyed man in the corner told This terrible tale of the days of old, And the party that ought to have kept the ducks.
"Well, it ain't all joy bein' on the land With an overdraft that'd knock you flat; And the rabbits have pretty well took command; But the hardest thing for a man to stand Is the feller who says 'Well I told you so! You should ha' done this way, don't you know!' -- I could lay a bait for a man like that.
"The grasshoppers struck us in ninety-one And what they leave -- well, it ain't de luxe.
But a growlin' fault-findin' son of a gun Who'd lent some money to stock our run -- I said they'd eaten what grass we had -- Says he, 'Your management's very bad; You had a right to have kept some ducks!' "To have kept some ducks! And the place was white! Wherever you went you had to tread On grasshoppers guzzlin' day and night; And then with a swoosh they rose in flight, If you didn't look out for yourself they'd fly Like bullets into your open eye And knock it out of the back of your head.
"There isn't a turkey or goose or swan, Or a duck that quacks, or a hen that clucks, Can make a difference on a run When a grasshopper plague has once begun; 'If you'd finance us,' I says, 'I'd buy Ten thousand emus and have a try; The job,' I says, 'is too big for ducks! "'You must fetch a duck when you come to stay; A great big duck -- a Muscovy toff -- Ready and fit,' I says, 'for the fray; And if the grasshoppers come our way You turn your duck into the lucerne patch, And I'd be ready to make a match That the grasshoppers eat his feathers off!" "He came to visit us by and by, And it just so happened one day in spring A kind of cloud came over the sky -- A wall of grasshoppers nine miles high, And nine miles thick, and nine hundred wide, Flyin' in regiments, side by side, And eatin' up every living thing.
"All day long, like a shower of rain, You'd hear 'em smackin' against the wall, Tap, tap, tap, on the window pane, And they'd rise and jump at the house again Till their crippled carcasses piled outside.
But what did it matter if thousands died -- A million wouldn't be missed at all.
"We were drinkin' grasshoppers -- so to speak -- Till we skimmed their carcasses off the spring; And they fell so thick in the station creek They choked the waterholes all the week.
There was scarcely room for a trout to rise, And they'd only take artificial flies -- They got so sick of the real thing.
"An Arctic snowstorm was beat to rags When the hoppers rose for their morning flight With the flapping noise like a million flags: And the kitchen chimney was stuffed with bags For they'd fall right into the fire, and fry Till the cook sat down and began to cry -- And never a duck or fowl in sight.
"We strolled across to the railroad track -- Under a cover beneath some trucks, I sees a feather and hears a quack; I stoops and I pulls the tarpaulin back -- Every duck in the place was there, No good to them was the open air.
'Mister,' I says, 'There's your blanky ducks!'"
Written by T S (Thomas Stearns) Eliot | Create an image from this poem

Ash Wednesday

 I

Because I do not hope to turn again
Because I do not hope
Because I do not hope to turn
Desiring this man's gift and that man's scope
I no longer strive to strive towards such things
(Why should the agèd eagle stretch its wings?)
Why should I mourn
The vanished power of the usual reign?

Because I do not hope to know
The infirm glory of the positive hour
Because I do not think
Because I know I shall not know
The one veritable transitory power
Because I cannot drink
There, where trees flower, and springs flow, for there is
nothing again

Because I know that time is always time
And place is always and only place
And what is actual is actual only for one time
And only for one place
I rejoice that things are as they are and
I renounce the blessèd face
And renounce the voice
Because I cannot hope to turn again
Consequently I rejoice, having to construct something
Upon which to rejoice

And pray to God to have mercy upon us
And pray that I may forget
These matters that with myself I too much discuss
Too much explain
Because I do not hope to turn again
Let these words answer
For what is done, not to be done again
May the judgement not be too heavy upon us

Because these wings are no longer wings to fly
But merely vans to beat the air
The air which is now thoroughly small and dry
Smaller and dryer than the will
Teach us to care and not to care Teach us to sit still.
Pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death Pray for us now and at the hour of our death.
II Lady, three white leopards sat under a juniper-tree In the cool of the day, having fed to sateity On my legs my heart my liver and that which had been contained In the hollow round of my skull.
And God said Shall these bones live? shall these Bones live? And that which had been contained In the bones (which were already dry) said chirping: Because of the goodness of this Lady And because of her loveliness, and because She honours the Virgin in meditation, We shine with brightness.
And I who am here dissembled Proffer my deeds to oblivion, and my love To the posterity of the desert and the fruit of the gourd.
It is this which recovers My guts the strings of my eyes and the indigestible portions Which the leopards reject.
The Lady is withdrawn In a white gown, to contemplation, in a white gown.
Let the whiteness of bones atone to forgetfulness.
There is no life in them.
As I am forgotten And would be forgotten, so I would forget Thus devoted, concentrated in purpose.
And God said Prophesy to the wind, to the wind only for only The wind will listen.
And the bones sang chirping With the burden of the grasshopper, saying Lady of silences Calm and distressed Torn and most whole Rose of memory Rose of forgetfulness Exhausted and life-giving Worried reposeful The single Rose Is now the Garden Where all loves end Terminate torment Of love unsatisfied The greater torment Of love satisfied End of the endless Journey to no end Conclusion of all that Is inconclusible Speech without word and Word of no speech Grace to the Mother For the Garden Where all love ends.
Under a juniper-tree the bones sang, scattered and shining We are glad to be scattered, we did little good to each other, Under a tree in the cool of day, with the blessing of sand, Forgetting themselves and each other, united In the quiet of the desert.
This is the land which ye Shall divide by lot.
And neither division nor unity Matters.
This is the land.
We have our inheritance.
III At the first turning of the second stair I turned and saw below The same shape twisted on the banister Under the vapour in the fetid air Struggling with the devil of the stairs who wears The deceitul face of hope and of despair.
At the second turning of the second stair I left them twisting, turning below; There were no more faces and the stair was dark, Damp, jaggèd, like an old man's mouth drivelling, beyond repair, Or the toothed gullet of an agèd shark.
At the first turning of the third stair Was a slotted window bellied like the figs's fruit And beyond the hawthorn blossom and a pasture scene The broadbacked figure drest in blue and green Enchanted the maytime with an antique flute.
Blown hair is sweet, brown hair over the mouth blown, Lilac and brown hair; Distraction, music of the flute, stops and steps of the mind over the third stair, Fading, fading; strength beyond hope and despair Climbing the third stair.
Lord, I am not worthy Lord, I am not worthy but speak the word only.
IV Who walked between the violet and the violet Whe walked between The various ranks of varied green Going in white and blue, in Mary's colour, Talking of trivial things In ignorance and knowledge of eternal dolour Who moved among the others as they walked, Who then made strong the fountains and made fresh the springs Made cool the dry rock and made firm the sand In blue of larkspur, blue of Mary's colour, Sovegna vos Here are the years that walk between, bearing Away the fiddles and the flutes, restoring One who moves in the time between sleep and waking, wearing White light folded, sheathing about her, folded.
The new years walk, restoring Through a bright cloud of tears, the years, restoring With a new verse the ancient rhyme.
Redeem The time.
Redeem The unread vision in the higher dream While jewelled unicorns draw by the gilded hearse.
The silent sister veiled in white and blue Between the yews, behind the garden god, Whose flute is breathless, bent her head and signed but spoke no word But the fountain sprang up and the bird sang down Redeem the time, redeem the dream The token of the word unheard, unspoken Till the wind shake a thousand whispers from the yew And after this our exile V If the lost word is lost, if the spent word is spent If the unheard, unspoken Word is unspoken, unheard; Still is the unspoken word, the Word unheard, The Word without a word, the Word within The world and for the world; And the light shone in darkness and Against the Word the unstilled world still whirled About the centre of the silent Word.
O my people, what have I done unto thee.
Where shall the word be found, where will the word Resound? Not here, there is not enough silence Not on the sea or on the islands, not On the mainland, in the desert or the rain land, For those who walk in darkness Both in the day time and in the night time The right time and the right place are not here No place of grace for those who avoid the face No time to rejoice for those who walk among noise and deny the voice Will the veiled sister pray for Those who walk in darkness, who chose thee and oppose thee, Those who are torn on the horn between season and season, time and time, between Hour and hour, word and word, power and power, those who wait In darkness? Will the veiled sister pray For children at the gate Who will not go away and cannot pray: Pray for those who chose and oppose O my people, what have I done unto thee.
Will the veiled sister between the slender Yew trees pray for those who offend her And are terrified and cannot surrender And affirm before the world and deny between the rocks In the last desert before the last blue rocks The desert in the garden the garden in the desert Of drouth, spitting from the mouth the withered apple-seed.
O my people.
VI Although I do not hope to turn again Although I do not hope Although I do not hope to turn Wavering between the profit and the loss In this brief transit where the dreams cross The dreamcrossed twilight between birth and dying (Bless me father) though I do not wish to wish these things From the wide window towards the granite shore The white sails still fly seaward, seaward flying Unbroken wings And the lost heart stiffens and rejoices In the lost lilac and the lost sea voices And the weak spirit quickens to rebel For the bent golden-rod and the lost sea smell Quickens to recover The cry of quail and the whirling plover And the blind eye creates The empty forms between the ivory gates And smell renews the salt savour of the sandy earth This is the time of tension between dying and birth The place of solitude where three dreams cross Between blue rocks But when the voices shaken from the yew-tree drift away Let the other yew be shaken and reply.
Blessèd sister, holy mother, spirit of the fountain, spirit of the garden, Suffer us not to mock ourselves with falsehood Teach us to care and not to care Teach us to sit still Even among these rocks, Our peace in His will And even among these rocks Sister, mother And spirit of the river, spirit of the sea, Suffer me not to be separated And let my cry come unto Thee.
Written by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow | Create an image from this poem

Blessing The Cornfields

 Sing, O Song of Hiawatha,
Of the happy days that followed,
In the land of the Ojibways,
In the pleasant land and peaceful!
Sing the mysteries of Mondamin,
Sing the Blessing of the Cornfields!
Buried was the bloody hatchet,
Buried was the dreadful war-club,
Buried were all warlike weapons,
And the war-cry was forgotten.
There was peace among the nations; Unmolested roved the hunters, Built the birch canoe for sailing, Caught the fish in lake and river, Shot the deer and trapped the beaver; Unmolested worked the women, Made their sugar from the maple, Gathered wild rice in the meadows, Dressed the skins of deer and beaver.
All around the happy village Stood the maize-fields, green and shining, Waved the green plumes of Mondamin, Waved his soft and sunny tresses, Filling all the land with plenty.
`T was the women who in Spring-time Planted the broad fields and fruitful, Buried in the earth Mondamin; `T was the women who in Autumn Stripped the yellow husks of harvest, Stripped the garments from Mondamin, Even as Hiawatha taught them.
Once, when all the maize was planted, Hiawatha, wise and thoughtful, Spake and said to Minnehaha, To his wife, the Laughing Water: "You shall bless to-night the cornfields, Draw a magic circle round them, To protect them from destruction, Blast of mildew, blight of insect, Wagemin, the thief of cornfields, Paimosaid, who steals the maize-ear "In the night, when all Is silence,' In the night, when all Is darkness, When the Spirit of Sleep, Nepahwin, Shuts the doors of all the wigwams, So that not an ear can hear you, So that not an eye can see you, Rise up from your bed in silence, Lay aside your garments wholly, Walk around the fields you planted, Round the borders of the cornfields, Covered by your tresses only, Robed with darkness as a garment.
"Thus the fields shall be more fruitful, And the passing of your footsteps Draw a magic circle round them, So that neither blight nor mildew, Neither burrowing worm nor insect, Shall pass o'er the magic circle; Not the dragon-fly, Kwo-ne-she, Nor the spider, Subbekashe, Nor the grasshopper, Pah-puk-keena; Nor the mighty caterpillar, Way-muk-kwana, with the bear-skin, King of all the caterpillars!" On the tree-tops near the cornfields Sat the hungry crows and ravens, Kahgahgee, the King of Ravens, With his band of black marauders.
And they laughed at Hiawatha, Till the tree-tops shook with laughter, With their melancholy laughter, At the words of Hiawatha.
"Hear him!" said they; "hear the Wise Man, Hear the plots of Hiawatha!" When the noiseless night descended Broad and dark o'er field and forest, When the mournful Wawonaissa Sorrowing sang among the hemlocks, And the Spirit of Sleep, Nepahwin, Shut the doors of all the wigwams, From her bed rose Laughing Water, Laid aside her garments wholly, And with darkness clothed and guarded, Unashamed and unaffrighted, Walked securely round the cornfields, Drew the sacred, magic circle Of her footprints round the cornfields.
No one but the Midnight only Saw her beauty in the darkness, No one but the Wawonaissa Heard the panting of her bosom Guskewau, the darkness, wrapped her Closely in his sacred mantle, So that none might see her beauty, So that none might boast, "I saw her!" On the morrow, as the day dawned, Kahgahgee, the King of Ravens, Gathered all his black marauders, Crows and blackbirds, jays and ravens, Clamorous on the dusky tree-tops, And descended, fast and fearless, On the fields of Hiawatha, On the grave of the Mondamin.
"We will drag Mondamin," said they, "From the grave where he is buried, Spite of all the magic circles Laughing Water draws around it, Spite of all the sacred footprints Minnehaha stamps upon it!" But the wary Hiawatha, Ever thoughtful, careful, watchful, Had o'erheard the scornful laughter When they mocked him from the tree-tops.
"Kaw!" he said, "my friends the ravens! Kahgahgee, my King of Ravens! I will teach you all a lesson That shall not be soon forgotten!" He had risen before the daybreak, He had spread o'er all the cornfields Snares to catch the black marauders, And was lying now in ambush In the neighboring grove of pine-trees, Waiting for the crows and blackbirds, Waiting for the jays and ravens.
Soon they came with caw and clamor, Rush of wings and cry of voices, To their work of devastation, Settling down upon the cornfields, Delving deep with beak and talon, For the body of Mondamin.
And with all their craft and cunning, All their skill in wiles of warfare, They perceived no danger near them, Till their claws became entangled, Till they found themselves imprisoned In the snares of Hiawatha.
From his place of ambush came he, Striding terrible among them, And so awful was his aspect That the bravest quailed with terror.
Without mercy he destroyed them Right and left, by tens and twenties, And their wretched, lifeless bodies Hung aloft on poles for scarecrows Round the consecrated cornfields, As a signal of his vengeance, As a warning to marauders.
Only Kahgahgee, the leader, Kahgahgee, the King of Ravens, He alone was spared among them As a hostage for his people.
With his prisoner-string he bound him, Led him captive to his wigwam, Tied him fast with cords of elm-bark To the ridge-pole of his wigwam.
"Kahgahgee, my raven!" said he, "You the leader of the robbers, You the plotter of this mischief, The contriver of this outrage, I will keep you, I will hold you, As a hostage for your people, As a pledge of good behavior!" And he left him, grim and sulky, Sitting in the morning sunshine On the summit of the wigwam, Croaking fiercely his displeasure, Flapping his great sable pinions, Vainly struggling for his freedom, Vainly calling on his people! Summer passed, and Shawondasee Breathed his sighs o'er all the landscape, From the South-land sent his ardor, Wafted kisses warm and tender; And the maize-field grew and ripened, Till it stood in all the splendor Of its garments green and yellow, Of its tassels and its plumage, And the maize-ears full and shining Gleamed from bursting sheaths of verdure.
Then Nokomis, the old woman, Spake, and said to Minnehaha: `T is the Moon when, leaves are falling; All the wild rice has been gathered, And the maize is ripe and ready; Let us gather in the harvest, Let us wrestle with Mondamin, Strip him of his plumes and tassels, Of his garments green and yellow!" And the merry Laughing Water Went rejoicing from the wigwam, With Nokomis, old and wrinkled, And they called the women round them, Called the young men and the maidens, To the harvest of the cornfields, To the husking of the maize-ear.
On the border of the forest, Underneath the fragrant pine-trees, Sat the old men and the warriors Smoking in the pleasant shadow.
In uninterrupted silence Looked they at the gamesome labor Of the young men and the women; Listened to their noisy talking, To their laughter and their singing, Heard them chattering like the magpies, Heard them laughing like the blue-jays, Heard them singing like the robins.
And whene'er some lucky maiden Found a red ear in the husking, Found a maize-ear red as blood is, "Nushka!" cried they all together, "Nushka! you shall have a sweetheart, You shall have a handsome husband!" "Ugh!" the old men all responded From their seats beneath the pine-trees.
And whene'er a youth or maiden Found a crooked ear in husking, Found a maize-ear in the husking Blighted, mildewed, or misshapen, Then they laughed and sang together, Crept and limped about the cornfields, Mimicked in their gait and gestures Some old man, bent almost double, Singing singly or together: "Wagemin, the thief of cornfields! Paimosaid, who steals the maize-ear!" Till the cornfields rang with laughter, Till from Hiawatha's wigwam Kahgahgee, the King of Ravens, Screamed and quivered in his anger, And from all the neighboring tree-tops Cawed and croaked the black marauders.
"Ugh!" the old men all responded, From their seats beneath the pine-trees!
Written by William Blake | Create an image from this poem

Laughing Song

 When the green woods laugh with the voice of joy
And the dimpling stream runs laughing by,
When the air does laugh with our merry wit,
And the green hill laughs with the noise of it.
When the meadows laugh with lively green And the grasshopper laughs in the merry scene.
When Mary and Susan and Emily.
With their sweet round mouths sing Ha, Ha, He.
When the painted birds laugh in the shade Where our table with cherries and nuts is spread Come live & be merry and join with me, To sing the sweet chorus of Ha, Ha, He.
Written by William Allingham | Create an image from this poem

Lepracaun or Fairy Shoemaker The

 Little Cowboy, what have you heard,
Up on the lonely rath's green mound?
Only the plaintive yellow bird
Sighing in sultry fields around,
Chary, chary, chary, chee-ee! -
Only the grasshopper and the bee? -
"Tip-tap, rip-rap,
Tick-a-tack-too!
Scarlet leather, sewn together,
This will make a shoe.
Left, right, pull it tight; Summer days are warm; Underground in winter, Laughing at the storm!" Lay your ear close to the hill.
Do you not catch th etiny clamour, Busy click of an elfin hammer.
Voice of the Lepracaun singing shrill As he merrily plies his trade? He's a span And a quarter in height, Get him in sight, hold him tight, And you're a made Man! You watch your cattle the summerday, Sup on potatoes, sleep in the hay; how would you like to roll in your carriage, Look for a duchess's daughter in marriage? Seize the shoemaker - then you may! "Big boots a -hunting, Sandals in the hall, White for a wedding feast, Pink for a ball.
This way, that way, So we makea shoe; Getting rich every stitch, Tick-a-tack too!" Nine and ninety treasure crocks This keen miser fairy hath, Hid in the mountains, woods and rocks, Ruin and round-tow'r, cave and rath, And where cormorants build; From times of old Guarded by him; Each of them fill'd Full to the brim With gold! I caught him at work one day, myself, In the castle ditch where fox-glove grows, - A wrinkled, wizen'd and bearded Elf, Spectacles stuck on his pointed nose, Silver buckles to his hose, Leather apron - shoe in his lap - 'Rip-rap, tip-tap, Tick-tack-too! (A grasshopper on my cap! Away the moth flew!) Buskins for a fairy prince, Brogues for his son - Pay me well, pay me well, When the job is done!" The rogue was mine, beyond a doubt.
I stared at him, he stared at me; "Servant Sir!" "Humph" says he, And pull'd a snuff-box out.
He took a long pinch, look'd better pleased, The ***** little Lepracaun; Offer'd the box with a whimsical grace, - Pouf! He flung the dust in my face, And while I sneezed, Was gone!
Written by William Cullen Bryant | Create an image from this poem

After a Tempest

 The day had been a day of wind and storm;-- 
The wind was laid, the storm was overpast,-- 
And stooping from the zenith, bright and warm 
Shone the great sun on the wide earth at last.
I stood upon the upland slope and cast My eye upon a broad and beauteous scene, Where the vast plain lay girt by mountains vast, And hills o'er hills lifted their heads of green, With pleasant vales scooped out and villages between.
The rain-drops glistened on the trees around, Whose shadows on the tall grass were not stirred, Save when a shower of diamonds, to the ground, Was shaken by the flight of startled bird; For birds were warbling round, and bees were heard About the flowers; the cheerful rivulet sung And gossiped, as he hastened ocean-ward; To the gray oak the squirrel, chiding clung, And chirping from the ground the grasshopper upsprung.
And from beneath the leaves that kept them dry Flew many a glittering insect here and there, And darted up and down the butterfly, That seemed a living blossom of the air.
The flocks came scattering from the thicket, where The violent rain had pent them; in the way Strolled groups of damsels frolicksome and fair; The farmer swung the scythe or turned the hay, And 'twixt the heavy swaths his children were at play.
It was a scene of peace--and, like a spell, Did that serene and golden sunlight fall Upon the motionless wood that clothed the fell, And precipice upspringing like a wall, And glassy river and white waterfall, And happy living things that trod the bright And beauteous scene; while far beyond them all, On many a lovely valley, out of sight, Was poured from the blue heavens the same soft golden light.
I looked, and thought the quiet of the scene An emblem of the peace that yet shall be, When, o'er earth's continents and isles between, The noise of war shall cease from sea to sea, And married nations dwell in harmony; When millions, crouching in the dust to one, No more shall beg their lives on bended knee, Nor the black stake be dressed, nor in the sun The o'erlabored captive toil, and wish his life were done.
Too long, at clash of arms amid her bowers And pools of blood, the earth has stood aghast, The fair earth, that should only blush with flowers And ruddy fruits; but not for aye can last The storm, and sweet the sunshine when 'tis past.
Lo, the clouds roll away--they break--they fly, And, like the glorious light of summer, cast O'er the wide landscape from the embracing sky, On all the peaceful world the smile of heaven shall lie.
Written by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe | Create an image from this poem

TO THE GRASSHOPPER

 AFTER ANACREON.
[The strong resemblance of this fine poem to Cowley's Ode bearing the same name, and beginning "Happy insect! what can be," will be at once seen.
] HAPPY art thou, darling insect, Who, upon the trees' tall branches, By a modest draught inspired, Singing, like a monarch livest! Thou possessest as thy portion All that on the plains thou seest, All that by the hours is brought thee 'Mongst the husbandmen thou livest, As a friend, uninjured by them, Thou whom mortals love to honour, Herald sweet of sweet Spring's advent! Yes, thou'rt loved by all the Muses, Phoebus' self, too, needs must love thee; They their silver voices gave thee, Age can never steal upon thee.
Wise and gentle friend of poets, Born a creature fleshless, bloodless, Though Earth's daughter, free from suff'ring, To the gods e'en almost equal.
1781.
Written by John Keats | Create an image from this poem

On The Grasshopper And Cricket

 The poetry of earth is never dead:
 When all the birds are faint with the hot sun,
 And hide in cooling trees, a voice will run
From hedge to hedge about the new-mown mead;
That is the Grasshopper's—he takes the lead
 In summer luxury,—he has never done
 With his delights; for when tired out with fun
He rests at ease beneath some pleasant weed.
The poetry of earth is ceasing never: On a lone winter evening, when the frost Has wrought a silence, from the stove there shrills The Cricket's song, in warmth increasing ever, And seems to one in drowsiness half lost, The Grasshopper's among some grassy hills.
Written by Joseph Brodsky | Create an image from this poem

Tsushima Screen

The perilous blue sun follows with its slant eyes
masts of the shuddered grove steaming up to capsize
in the frozen straits of Epiphany.
February has fewer days than the other months; therefore it's morecruel than the rest.
Dearest it's more sound to wrap up our sailing round the globe with habitual naval grace moving your cot to the fireplace where our dreadnought is going under in great smoke.
Only fire can grasp a winter! Golder unharnessed stallions in the chimney dye their manes to more corvine shades as they near the finish and the dark room fills with the plaintive incessant chirring of a naked lounging grasshopper one cannot cup in fingers.
Written by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow | Create an image from this poem

Hiawathas Departure

 By the shore of Gitche Gumee,
By the shining Big-Sea-Water,
At the doorway of his wigwam,
In the pleasant Summer morning,
Hiawatha stood and waited.
All the air was full of freshness, All the earth was bright and joyous, And before him, through the sunshine, Westward toward the neighboring forest Passed in golden swarms the Ahmo, Passed the bees, the honey-makers, Burning, singing In the sunshine.
Bright above him shone the heavens, Level spread the lake before him; From its bosom leaped the sturgeon, Sparkling, flashing in the sunshine; On its margin the great forest Stood reflected in the water, Every tree-top had its shadow, Motionless beneath the water.
From the brow of Hiawatha Gone was every trace of sorrow, As the fog from off the water, As the mist from off the meadow.
With a smile of joy and triumph, With a look of exultation, As of one who in a vision Sees what is to be, but is not, Stood and waited Hiawatha.
Toward the sun his hands were lifted, Both the palms spread out against it, And between the parted fingers Fell the sunshine on his features, Flecked with light his naked shoulders, As it falls and flecks an oak-tree Through the rifted leaves and branches.
O'er the water floating, flying, Something in the hazy distance, Something in the mists of morning, Loomed and lifted from the water, Now seemed floating, now seemed flying, Coming nearer, nearer, nearer.
Was it Shingebis the diver? Or the pelican, the Shada? Or the heron, the Shuh-shuh-gah? Or the white goose, Waw-be-wawa, With the water dripping, flashing, From its glossy neck and feathers? It was neither goose nor diver, Neither pelican nor heron, O'er the water floating, flying, Through the shining mist of morning, But a birch canoe with paddles, Rising, sinking on the water, Dripping, flashing in the sunshine; And within it came a people From the distant land of Wabun, From the farthest realms of morning Came the Black-Robe chief, the Prophet, He the Priest of Prayer, the Pale-face, With his guides and his companions.
And the noble Hiawatha, With his hands aloft extended, Held aloft in sign of welcome, Waited, full of exultation, Till the birch canoe with paddles Grated on the shining pebbles, Stranded on the sandy margin, Till the Black-Robe chief, the Pale-face, With the cross upon his bosom, Landed on the sandy margin.
Then the joyous Hiawatha Cried aloud and spake in this wise: "Beautiful is the sun, O strangers, When you come so far to see us! All our town in peace awaits you, All our doors stand open for you; You shall enter all our wigwams, For the heart's right hand we give you.
"Never bloomed the earth so gayly, Never shone the sun so brightly, As to-day they shine and blossom When you come so far to see us! Never was our lake so tranquil, Nor so free from rocks, and sand-bars; For your birch canoe in passing Has removed both rock and sand-bar.
"Never before had our tobacco Such a sweet and pleasant flavor, Never the broad leaves of our cornfields Were so beautiful to look on, As they seem to us this morning, When you come so far to see us!' And the Black-Robe chief made answer, Stammered In his speech a little, Speaking words yet unfamiliar: "Peace be with you, Hiawatha, Peace be with you and your people, Peace of prayer, and peace of pardon, Peace of Christ, and joy of Mary!" Then the generous Hiawatha Led the strangers to his wigwam, Seated them on skins of bison, Seated them on skins of ermine, And the careful old Nokomis Brought them food in bowls of basswood, Water brought in birchen dippers, And the calumet, the peace-pipe, Filled and lighted for their smoking.
All the old men of the village, All the warriors of the nation, All the Jossakeeds, the Prophets, The magicians, the Wabenos, And the Medicine-men, the Medas, Came to bid the strangers welcome; "It is well", they said, "O brothers, That you come so far to see us!" In a circle round the doorway, With their pipes they sat In silence, Waiting to behold the strangers, Waiting to receive their message; Till the Black-Robe chief, the Pale-face, From the wigwam came to greet them, Stammering in his speech a little, Speaking words yet unfamiliar; "It Is well," they said, "O brother, That you come so far to see us!" Then the Black-Robe chief, the Prophet, Told his message to the people, Told the purport of his mission, Told them of the Virgin Mary, And her blessed Son, the Saviour, How in distant lands and ages He had lived on earth as we do; How he fasted, prayed, and labored; How the Jews, the tribe accursed, Mocked him, scourged him, crucified him; How he rose from where they laid him, Walked again with his disciples, And ascended into heaven.
And the chiefs made answer, saying: "We have listened to your message, We have heard your words of wisdom, We will think on what you tell us.
It is well for us, O brothers, That you come so far to see us!" Then they rose up and departed Each one homeward to his wigwam, To the young men and the women Told the story of the strangers Whom the Master of Life had sent them From the shining land of Wabun.
Heavy with the heat and silence Grew the afternoon of Summer; With a drowsy sound the forest Whispered round the sultry wigwam, With a sound of sleep the water Rippled on the beach below it; From the cornfields shrill and ceaseless Sang the grasshopper, Pah-puk-keena; And the guests of Hiawatha, Weary with the heat of Summer, Slumbered in the sultry wigwam.
Slowly o'er the simmering landscape Fell the evening's dusk and coolness, And the long and level sunbeams Shot their spears into the forest, Breaking through its shields of shadow, Rushed into each secret ambush, Searched each thicket, dingle, hollow; Still the guests of Hiawatha Slumbered In the silent wigwam.
From his place rose Hiawatha, Bade farewell to old Nokomis, Spake in whispers, spake in this wise, Did not wake the guests, that slumbered.
"I am going, O Nokomis, On a long and distant journey, To the portals of the Sunset.
To the regions of the home-wind, Of the Northwest-Wind, Keewaydin.
But these guests I leave behind me, In your watch and ward I leave them; See that never harm comes near them, See that never fear molests them, Never danger nor suspicion, Never want of food or shelter, In the lodge of Hiawatha!" Forth into the village went he, Bade farewell to all the warriors, Bade farewell to all the young men, Spake persuading, spake in this wise: I am going, O my people, On a long and distant journey; Many moons and many winters Will have come, and will have vanished, Ere I come again to see you.
But my guests I leave behind me; Listen to their words of wisdom, Listen to the truth they tell you, For the Master of Life has sent them From the land of light and morning!" On the shore stood Hiawatha, Turned and waved his hand at parting; On the clear and luminous water Launched his birch canoe for sailing, From the pebbles of the margin Shoved it forth into the water; Whispered to it, "Westward! westward!" And with speed it darted forward.
And the evening sun descending Set the clouds on fire with redness, Burned the broad sky, like a prairie, Left upon the level water One long track and trail of splendor, Down whose stream, as down a river, Westward, westward Hiawatha Sailed into the fiery sunset, Sailed into the purple vapors, Sailed into the dusk of evening: And the people from the margin Watched him floating, rising, sinking, Till the birch canoe seemed lifted High into that sea of splendor, Till it sank into the vapors Like the new moon slowly, slowly Sinking in the purple distance.
And they said, "Farewell forever!" Said, "Farewell, O Hiawatha!" And the forests, dark and lonely, Moved through all their depths of darkness, Sighed, "Farewell, O Hiawatha!" And the waves upon the margin Rising, rippling on the pebbles, Sobbed, "Farewell, O Hiawatha!" And the heron, the Shuh-shuh-gah, From her haunts among the fen-lands, Screamed, "Farewell, O Hiawatha!" Thus departed Hiawatha, Hiawatha the Beloved, In the glory of the sunset,.
In the purple mists of evening, To the regions of the home-wind, Of the Northwest-Wind, Keewaydin, To the Islands of the Blessed, To the Kingdom of Ponemah, To the Land of the Hereafter!
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