by: Karle Wilson Baker (1878-1960)

      he wind is blowing across the world; it is lifting my brother's hair
      Freshly from off his forehead, and bringing the light to his eyes;
      Listen, and you may hear it come, stirring the empty air:
      Oh, lift your faces, folk of the world, and feel the wind arise!

      Feel it? Ay, you may see it far, in the tops of the gusty trees
      Where the beam of a day that is passing borrows a poignant grace;
      And some are scattered before the gale, like a leaf that flutters and flees--
      But we that have waited long stand up and take it full in the face!

      It comes, and we know not whither; it hastens we know not where;
      And boisterous is its coming, the swoop of its healing wings;
      Yet dainty as breath of clover-fields it washes in waves of air
      O'er a wistful world that had half forgot to dream of its visitings.

      No blame to our patient fathers, they born to the moment of calm;
      The great winds blow not alway; the storm itself must rest;
      They shunned not the wounds of the weary fight, though their wise men knew no balm:
      Though the air was stale and empty, they breathed it and did their best.

      But ours was the happy cradle, the trough of the rising wave;
      Up to its crested summit shall our lives perforce be flung.
      In the great world's battle-ages, even the cowards are brave;
      The winds of God are blowing, and we--ah,l we are young!

"The Winds of God" is reprinted from Blue Smoke. Karle Wilson Baker. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1919.




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