The Valley of the San Miguel.

A poem by Alfred Castner King

In the golden West, by fond Nature blest,
Lies a vale which my heart holds dear;
Where the zephyr blows from eternal snows
And tempers the atmosphere;
Where the torrent falls o'er the mountain walls,
As its thunderous echoes thrill,
Where the sparkling mist, by the rainbow kissed,
Decks the Valley of San Miguel[1].

Where the birds of spring, in their season sing,
Their spontaneous melodies;
Where the columbine and the stately pine
Stand quivering in the breeze;
Where the aspen tall hugs the trachyte wall,
And the wild rose bedecks the hill;
Where the willows weep, and their vigils keep,
On the banks of the San Miguel.

Where the mountains high, cleave the azure sky,
With their turrets so bleak and gray;
Where the morning light crowns the dizzy height,
At the break of the summer's day;
Where the crags look down with an austere frown,
O'er the valley so calm and still;
Where the mesas blue, blend their dreamy hue
With the skies of the San Miguel.

Where the mountains hold a vast wealth of gold,
In the quartz ledge and placer bar;
Where the hills resound with the constant sound
Of the stamp mill's battering jar;
Where the waters dash with the rhythmic splash
Of the cascade and mountain rill,
As they laugh and flow to the lands below,
Through the turbulent San Miguel.

Where the shadows glide, in the eventide,
As the sun, to nocturnal rest,
With the dazzling rays of a world ablaze,
Sinks into the distant west;
When the yellow leaf of existence brief,
Brings the hour when the pulse is still,
May my ashes rest in the golden West,
On the banks of the San Miguel.

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