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Archive for October, 2018

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Came to see
A covered bridge, then
Saw this one.

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The picture is mine, taken from the Worrall Covered Bridge near
Rockingham, Vermont, and the scene in the picture was more
beautiful than all the pictures I took of the covered bridge.

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* The haiku I write are lines of 3-5-3 syllables instead of 5-7-5.

See Haiku article here for explanation, if needed: https://thebardonthehill.wordpress.com/2011/08/08/haiku/
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© Dennis Allen Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2018.

 

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The Frost performs its secret ministry,
Unhelped by any wind. The owlet’s cry
Came loud—and hark, again! loud as before.
The inmates of my cottage, all at rest,
Have left me to that solitude, which suits
Abstruser musings: save that at my side
My cradled infant slumbers peacefully.
‘Tis calm indeed! so calm, that it disturbs
And vexes meditation with its strange
And extreme silentness. Sea, hill, and wood,
This populous village! Sea, and hill, and wood,
With all the numberless goings-on of life,
Inaudible as dreams! the thin blue flame
Lies on my low-burnt fire, and quivers not;
Only that film, which fluttered on the grate,
Still flutters there, the sole unquiet thing.
Methinks, its motion in this hush of nature
Gives it dim sympathies with me who live,
Making it a companionable form,
Whose puny flaps and freaks the idling Spirit
By its own moods interprets, every where
Echo or mirror seeking of itself,
And makes a toy of Thought.

…………………………………………………But O! how oft,
How oft, at school, with most believing mind,
Presageful, have I gazed upon the bars,
To watch that fluttering stranger! and as oft
With unclosed lids, already had I dreamt
Of my sweet birth-place, and the old church-tower,
Whose bells, the poor man’s only music, rang
From morn to evening, all the hot Fair-day,
So sweetly, that they stirred and haunted me
With a wild pleasure, falling on mine ear
Most like articulate sounds of things to come!
So gazed I, till the soothing things, I dreamt,
Lulled me to sleep, and sleep prolonged my dreams!
And so I brooded all the following morn,
Awed by the stern preceptor’s face, mine eye
Fixed with mock study on my swimming book:
Save if the door half opened, and I snatched
A hasty glance, and still my heart leaped up,
For still I hoped to see the stranger’s face,
Townsman, or aunt, or sister more beloved,
My play-mate when we both were clothed alike!

………..Dear Babe, that sleepest cradled by my side,
Whose gentle breathings, heard in this deep calm,
Fill up the intersperséd vacancies
And momentary pauses of the thought!
My babe so beautiful! it thrills my heart
With tender gladness, thus to look at thee,
And think that thou shalt learn far other lore,
And in far other scenes! For I was reared
In the great city, pent ‘mid cloisters dim,
And saw nought lovely but the sky and stars.
But thou, my babe! shalt wander like a breeze
By lakes and sandy shores, beneath the crags
Of ancient mountain, and beneath the clouds,
Which image in their bulk both lakes and shores
And mountain crags: so shalt thou see and hear
The lovely shapes and sounds intelligible
Of that eternal language, which thy God
Utters, who from eternity doth teach
Himself in all, and all things in himself.
Great universal Teacher! he shall mould
Thy spirit, and by giving make it ask.

………Therefore all seasons shall be sweet to thee,
Whether the summer clothe the general earth
With greenness, or the redbreast sit and sing
Betwixt the tufts of snow on the bare branch
Of mossy apple-tree, while the night-thatch
Smokes in the sun-thaw; whether the eave-drops fall
Heard only in the trances of the blast,
Or if the secret ministry of frost
Shall hang them up in silent icicles,
Quietly shining to the quiet Moon.

 

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…..1 O God, I give thanks with my heart:
…………
I’m warned by Your thunders;
…………I’m awed by Your wonders;
…..2 To praise and obey is my part.

…..3 My foes are oft found in retreat;
…………You make them to stumble,
…………Cause kingdoms to crumble;
……..You crush them like stubble of wheat.

..4-6 You judge all of man from Your throne:
…………Their cities uprooted;
…………Their memory muted;
…..7 Yet, You, O my God, still go on.

…..8 You’re just as You judge all the earth;
………….Your judgments are equal,
………….And final, no sequel.
……..Man’s trust in Your grace finds its worth.

.9-10 For those who’re oppressed, You’re their strength –
………….A stronghold in trouble,
………….A fortress that’s double –
………You last and You lead the full length.

11-12 Declare to the world all His deeds;
………….Sing praises in Zion
………….For each is a scion;
……….We’re heirs and He fills all our needs.

13-14 From depths of the pit rescue me –
………….Lord, see my affliction,
………….My foes and their friction,
………That praise in Your gates is a sea.

15-17 The trap that the nations have made
………….Will on them be springing,
………….And woe to them bringing,
……….When all of the cards have been played.

……….Like lion You rise from Your den,
………….The wicked all perish
…..18….That You some may cherish,
…..20.That men may all know they’re mere men.

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I’ve written all of Psalms and Proverbs in poetry that rhymes and has rhythm.  The book will be available at Amazon before Christmas.  If you’re interested (and have not already said so),  let me know in the comments.

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copyright Dennis Allen Lange and thebardonthehill@wordpress.com, 2018.

 

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(on the unveiling of his monument at Indianapolis –
October 27, 1908)

As tangible a form in History
The Spirit of this man stands forth as here
He towers in deathless sculpture, high and clear
Against the bright sky of his destiny.
Sprung of our oldest, noblest ancestry,
His pride of birth, a lofty as sincere,
Held kith and kin, as Country, ever dear –
Such was his sacred faith in you and me.
Thus, natively, from youth his work was one
Unselfish service in behalf of all –
Home, friends and sharers of his toil and stress;
Ay, loving all men and despising none,
And swift to answer every righteous call,
His life was one long deed of worthiness. 

The voice of Duty’s faintest whisper found
Him as alert as at her battle-cry –
When awful War’s battalions thundered by,
High o’er the havoc still he heard the sound
Of mothers’ prayers and pleadings all around;
And ever the despairing sob and sigh
Of stricken wives and orphan children’s cry
Made all our Land thrice consecrated ground.
So rang his “forward!” and so swept his sword –
On! – on! – till from the fire-and-cloud once more
Our proud Flag lifted in the glad sunlight
As though the very Ensign of the Lord
Unfurled in token that the strife was o’er,
And victory – as ever – with the right.

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Benjamin Harris was the 23rd president of the United States.

 

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Tower – 5:00.
But the tree leaves say
It’s Autumn.

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The photo is mine, taken in 2017.

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* The haiku I write are lines of 3-5-3 syllables instead of 5-7-5.

See Haiku article here for explanation, if needed: https://thebardonthehill.wordpress.com/2011/08/08/haiku/
—————————–

© Dennis Allen Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2018.

 

 

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There’s a certain Slant of light,
Winter Afternoons –
That oppresses, like the Heft
Of Cathedral Tunes – 

Heavenly Hurt, it gives us –
We can find no scar,
But internal difference,
Where the Meanings, are – 

None may teach it – Any –
‘Tis the Seal Despair –
An imperial affliction
Sent us of the Air – 

When it comes, the Landscape listens –
Shadows – hold their breath –
When it goes, ’tis like the Distance
On the look of Death –

 

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Like sleeper, from a hammock, rude removed from resting place,
I soon was seeking solace in a soothing shaded grace,
An old continued pastime that would comfort in my change
As I returned to my hometown from years upon the range.

Along the street I parked my car, that bright December day
And up the steps I slowly went, a snail, unsure the way
For memory did not connect the steps with aging feet;
What lay inside before my goal – a meeting room, a suite?

Ah, yes! There was a difference, and more I did not know;
Two workers now, a desk was changed, computer all aglow;
And still the place, besides the new, had feel of antique, old –
The walls were pillared and the floors had tales that could be told.

Before the books, just like the brooks, there was a bridge – a card.
So, up to worker’s desk I went, as if she were a guard.
I told her what I needed – just a key to reading’s door.
And she replied, “Have you, with us, e’er had a card before?”

   When I was lad, my summers were
       A time from town retreating,
   To parents’ farm ten miles away –
       Cows mooing and sheep bleating.

   I lived there almost like a monk,
       Away from friends I cherished;
   No next-door neighbor like in town –
       My social life near perished.        

   I found another set of friends;
       They came each time invited.
   I felt as honored as if I’d
       Been called to court and knighted.

   And so my summer days were filled –
       Companions and adventure.
   They came those days; they quickly left,
       Like teachers without tenure.

   With Nancy Drew, I looked by lake
       For clue of broken locket.*
   We searched an attic old as dust
       For songs played out of pocket.**

   The Hardy boys came some days
       Both Frank and Joe – detectives.
   Of course, we all were given help
       By their Dad’s wise directives.            

     Some summer days were twice the fun
       And more than twice – twice doubled
     For Flossie, Freddie, Bert, and Nan
       Were Bobbsey twins that bubbled.

     And then some days I left the farm
       (My parents didn’t know it).
     The time machine sat by my bed
       Into the past, I rode it.

     To Tuskegee and Carver’s lab,
       I flew, launched by the pages;
    And with Von Braun, I moved toward space
       And gazed at rocket’s gauges.       

     I looked, while perched on Bunker Hill
         And saw the redcoats coming
     As thick as ants to claim a mound,
         An army marched by drumming.

   I saw defeat at Waterloo,
         With Lindbergh crossed the ocean;
     With Alexander, conquered worlds,
         With leopard’s swiftest motion.

I’m back. You asked about a card. My old one’s thrown away.
I used it for so long and oft, was worn out like cliché.
I did; I had one here; I doubt it’s in your records though –
Unless you have the registers for fifty years ago.

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* ND   The Clue of the Broken Locket, 1934

** ND   The Secret in the Old Attic, 1944

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The photo is mine, of Carnegie Library in Ballinger, Texas.

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© Dennis Allen Lange and thebardonthehill.wordpress.com, 2018.

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(verse from Hard Times by Charles Dickens)

There was an old woman, and what do you think?
She lived upon nothing but victuals and drink;
Victuals and drink were the whole of her diet,
And yet this old woman would NEVER be quiet.

 

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Wynken, Blynken, and Nod one night
Sailed off in a wooden shoe,—
Sailed on a river of crystal light
Into a sea of dew.
“Where are you going, and what do you wish?”
The old moon asked the three.
“We have come to fish for the herring-fish
That live in this beautiful sea;
Nets of silver and gold have we,”
…….Said Wynken,
…….Blynken,
…….And Nod.

The old moon laughed and sang a song,
As they rocked in the wooden shoe;
And the wind that sped them all night long
Ruffled the waves of dew;
The little stars were the herring-fish
That lived in the beautiful sea.
“Now cast your nets wherever you wish,—
Never afraid are we!”
So cried the stars to the fishermen three,
…….Wynken,
…….Blynken,
…….And Nod.

All night long their nets they threw
To the stars in the twinkling foam,—
Then down from the skies came the wooden shoe,
Bringing the fishermen home:
‘Twas all so pretty a sail, it seemed
As if it could not be;
And some folk thought ‘twas a dream they’d dreamed
Of sailing that beautiful sea;
But I shall name you the fishermen three:
…….Wynken,
…….Blynken,
…….And Nod.

Wynken and Blynken are two little eyes,
And Nod is a little head,
And the wooden shoe that sailed the skies
Is a wee one’s trundle-bed;
So shut your eyes while Mother sings
Of wonderful sights that be,
And you shall see the beautiful things
As you rock in the misty sea
Where the old shoe rocked the fishermen three:—
…….Wynken,
…….Blynken,
…….And Nod.

 

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Prov 22 13

I’ve written all of Psalms and Proverbs in poetry that rhymes and has rhythm.  The book will be available at Amazon before Christmas.  If you’re interested (and have not already said so),  let me know in the comments.

————————————————————————————————————————————–

copyright Dennis Allen Lange and thebardonthehill@wordpress.com, 2018.

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