Oh, to feel the fresh breeze blowing
From lone ridges yet untrod!
Oh, to see the far peak growing
Whiter as it climbs to God!
Where the silver streamlet rushes
I would follow–follow on
Till I hear the happy thrushes
Piping lyrics to the dawn.
Come, and learn the joy of living,
Come, and you will understand
How the sun his gold is giving
With a great impartial hand;
How the patient pine is climbing
Year by year to reach the sky;
How the rills make sweetest rhyming
Where the deepest shadows lie.
I would hear the wild rejoicing
Of the wind-blown cedar tree,
Hear the sturdy hemlock voicing
Ancient epics of the sea.
Forest aisles would I be winding
Out beyond the gates of care,
And in dim cathedrals, finding
Silence in the shrine of prayer.
I am nearer the great Giver
Where His handiwork is crude.
Friend am I of peak and river,
Comrade of old solitude.
Not for me the city’s riot,
Not for me the towers of trade.
I would seek the house of quiet
That the Master Workman made.
When the mystic night comes stealing
Through my vast green room afar,
Never king had richer ceiling–
Bended bough and yellow star.
Ah, to list the sacred preaching
Of the forest’s faithful fir,
With its strong arms upward reaching,
Mighty trustful worshiper.