Monday morning poetry selections will now be broadened to include other poets in addition to Walt Whitman. The verse below is the first stanza of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s epic poem “Evangeline.” I took the photo last spring at Pigeon Creek Park in Ottawa County Michigan, which is abundant in both hemlocks and pines. I’ve mentioned before that I have an affinity for Longfellow, I think because we read his poetry in elementary school and because his “Song of Hiawatha” is set in the Pictured Rocks area of Michigan on the southern shore of Lake Superior. This is cross-posted on my Michigan blog, Bookish in the Mitten, but titled “Michigan Monday – Evangeline: A Tale of Acadie.” The entire text of the poem can be found on Project Gutenberg’s website.
THIS is the forest primeval. The murmuring pines and the hemlocks,
Bearded with moss, and in garments green, indistinct in the twilight,
Stand like Druids of eld, with voices sad and prophetic,
Stand like harpers hoar, with beards that rest on their bosoms.
Loud from its rocky caverns, the deep-voiced neighboring ocean
Speaks, and in accents disconsolate answers the wail of the forest.