Vintage Poems – The Peace of Prairies

I will always love a place poem, especially one about a place I love: the prairie. And, oh! Those last three lines! Showstoppers. Enjoy!

By Grace Dickinson Sperling, Oak Park, Ill.

To heal my spirit’s ill there seemed no cure;
With diligence I searched from pole to pole
And grew accustomed to the lapping lure
Of water tugging at a weathered bole.
For I have climbed where mountain ranges run
Across and up and down like cacti spines;
I know her inland seas and desert sun,
Have slept and wakened under giant pines.
Still haunted with unrest I roamed the earth
In search of that for which my heart made moan;
Nor cared though my far questing brought to birth
Deep misery or joy,-were it my own;
When suddenly I came on growing com
And saw the prairies out where I was born.

Saw as a stranger where the gracious sky
All dappling, dipped to meet the ground,-
Alfalfa meadows, blue-grass, waving rye,
The little hills and everything around.
Then through my being surged remembered joy,
Articulate with melody of long
Forgotten tunes, and like a wayward boy
At home again, my heart held secret song.
Majestic mountain peaks had left me cold;
Loved cities, splendid, noisy with alarum
Palled on my jaded soul; but here were old
Calm scenes: the place where I was born, the charm
Of meadowlark, still singing in the grain,
And peace where skies bend low to kiss the plain.

Originally published in Pasque Petals 9.3, Summer 1934

Featured image by Andrew Dunning under the creative commons license on Flickr.

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