The Boy Columbus

A poem by Madison Julius Cawein

And he had mused on lands each bird,
That winged from realms of Falerina,
O'er seas of the Enchanted Sword,
In romance sang him, till he heard
Vague foam on Islands of Alcina.

For rich Levant and old Castile
Let other seamen freight their galleys;
With Polo he and Mandeville
Through stranger seas a dreamy keel
Sailed into wonder-peopled valleys.

Far continents of flow'r and fruit,
Of everlasting spring; where fountains
'Mid flow'rs, with human faces, shoot;
Where races dwell, both man and brute,
In cities under golden mountains.

Where cataracts their thunders hurl
From heights the tempest has at mercy;
Vast peaks that touch the moon, and whirl
Their torrents down of gold and pearl;
And forests strange as those of Circe.

Let rapiered Love lute, in the shade
Of royal gardens, to the Palace
And Court, that haunt the balustrade
Of terraces and still parade
Their vanity and guile and malice.

Him something calls diviner yet
Than Love, more mighty than a lover;
Heroic Truth that will not let
Deed lag; a purpose, westward set,
In eyes far-seeing to discover.

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