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Henry van Dyke


I love thine inland seas,
Thy groves of giant trees, 
Thy rolling plains,
Thy rivers' mighty sweep,
Thy mystic canyons deep,
Thy mountains wild and steep, 
All thy domains;

Thy silver Eastern strands,
Thy Golden Gate that stands 
Wide to the West;
Thy flowery Southland fair,
Thy sweet and crystal air,—
O land beyond compare, 
Thee I love best!

This poem is in the public domain.



Henry van Dyke (1852 - 1933) was born in Pennsylvania.  A nature lover and avid reader, he earned degrees from Princeton then served as a Presbyterian minister for more than 20 years. (He was considered one of the best preachers in New York City.) He eventually returned to Princeton, where he spent nearly 20 years as a professor of English--with a bit of service as the U.S. ambassador to Luxembourg and the Netherlands in between. A writer whose talent extended to many different genres, Henry's best known works are probably the lyrics of the hymn "Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee" and  the Christmas stories, "The Story of the Other Wise Man" and "The First Christmas Tree."  






Post New Comment:
Breath of fresh air--from a poet long gone!
Posted 07/05/2020 10:49 AM
Meticulous rhythm and rhymes.
Posted 07/04/2020 11:09 AM
Interesting use of repetition. The strong word Thy starts half the lines. Appropriate for today, especially in this politically difficult time.
Posted 07/04/2020 10:46 AM
michael escoubas:
Excellent choice for the day, Jayne; and thanks for the interesting commentary that sets up the poem nicely.
Posted 07/04/2020 09:50 AM

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