Monday, February 19, 2007

The Paps Of Dana

The mountains stand and stare around,
They are too proud to speak ;
Altho' they're rooted in the ground
Up they go, peak after peak,
Beyond the tallest tree, and still
Soaring over house and hill
Until you'd think they'd never stop
Going up, top over top,
Into the clouds—
Still I mark
That a sparrow or a lark
Flying just as high can sing
As if he'd not done anything. I think the mountains ought to be
Taught a little modesty.

This poem is taken from A Poetry Recital, published in June 1925. A a collection of poems Stephens used during his first American speaking tour in 1925. As such, the poems selected were those which could be read aloud with effect, and some are less poems than vocal excercises.
Two editions, a New York and a London one, were published in 1925 with slightly differing order and content. A new edition, dated 1926, added a foreward and seven poems to the 1925 American version. The new poems were: "Little Things," "The Snare," "The Merry Music," "The Fifteen Acres," "The Crest Jewel," "Thy Soul," and "Christmas in Freelands."

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