Charles Badger Clark

(1883 - 1957 / Albia, Iowa)

God Of The Open - Poem by Charles Badger Clark

God of the open, though I am so simple
Out in the wind I can travel with you,
noons when the hot mesas ripple and dimple,
Nights when the stars glitter cool in the blue.
Too far you stand for the reach of my hand,
Yet I can feel you big heart as it beats
Friendly and warm in the sun or the storm.
Are you the same as the God of the streets?
Yours is the sunny blue roof I ride under;
Mountain and plain are the house you have made.
Sometimes it roars with the wind and the thunder
But in your house I am never afraid.
He? Oh they give him the license to live,
Aim in their ledgers, to pay him his due,
Gather by herds to present him with words-
Words! What are words when my heart talks with you?
God of the open, forgive an old ranger
Penned among walls where he never sees through.
Well do I know, though their God seems a stranger,
Earth has no room for another like you.
Shut out the roll of the wheels from my soul;
Send me a wind that is singing and sweet
Into this place where the smoke dims your face.
Help me see you in the God of the street.


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Poem Submitted: Saturday, March 12, 2016



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