Katharine Lee Bates

Aug. 12, 1859 - Mar. 28, 1929

 

A Mountain Soul

by Katharine Lee Bates

A mountain soul, she shines in crystal air
Above the smokes and clamors of the town.
Her pure, majestic brows serenely wear
The stars for crown.

The buzzing wings of folly, slander, spite,
Fall frozen in her alien atmosphere.
Her heart's at home with sunrise and with night
As neighbors dear

Who tell her ancient tales of time and law,
The miracle of love breathed into dust,
Until her sweet gray eyes are brimmed with awe
And steadfast trust.

Remote she dwells mid her celestial kin,
Rainbow and Moon and Cloud, yet none the less
Full many a weak earth-creature shelters in
Her friendliness.

She comrades with the child, the bird, the fern,
Poet and sage and rustic chimney-nook,
But Pomp must be a pilgrim ere he earn
Her mountain look,

Her mountain look, the candor of the snow,
The strength of folded granite, and the calm
Of choiring pines, whose swayed green branches strow
A healing balm.

Oft as the psalmist lifted up his eyes
Unto the hills about Jerusalem,
Did not God's glory with a new surprise
Transfigure them?

That royal harper, passionate for rest,
Held one still summit dearest to his dream,
And only to the golden chords confessed
Its hour supreme;

For lovely is a mountain rosy-lit
With dawn, or steeped in sunshine, azure hot,
But loveliest when shadows traverse it
And stain it not.

Source:

Yellow Clover: A Book Of Remembrance
Copyright 1922
E. P. Dutton & Company, New York
 
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