Twelve men I chose to see the waiting land,
Where the rivers are jeweled in sunlight,
And the hills are a deep blue ocean with living spars
Of pine to catch the clouds and spread white sail.
My band, Knights of the Golden Horse Shoe,
I led upon a phantom trail
Where torrents blocked the way;
A cloud of dew came down by night, the sun was fire by day.
We followed writhing paths
Where fountains broke through stone; we drank
The crystal courage of the hills, and bowed to thank
The hand of Might that blended brawn and wonder,
And hid his handicraft behind a silver veil
That welded earth and sky.
Only the Savage knew the unmarked trail;
His ear had caught the music under ground
Made audible in water,
His eye had found the shadow-print of moss against a tree.
We stumbled on, up scarp and jagged boulder
And down the wet ravines, and up again we fought
Until one dawn we stood upon a Titan's shoulder,
And saw—beyond the blue unchallenged hills
That bore no trace of sorrow or of wars—
The Shenandoah, DAUGHTER OF THE STARS.
? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? —Gertrude Claytor