Far Horizons

by Bliss Carman


 

THE SPRING CALL OF WAWA


 

Hear the voice of Wawa in the twilight,
Now the snows are loosened on the plain!
Hear the word of Wawa going Northward,
Winging on the soft wind and the rain!
All the solemn April night resounding

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With the cries of Wawa and his train.

Awake, my April children,
And hark,—that startling cry,
The wild geese going over,
A great wedge honking high!

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The dark resounds with signals,
The heaven is full of wings,
And in your heart the flutter
Of wild imaginings,—

The breathless sudden impulse

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To get you out of door
And hear the old goose calling
On the long trek once more.

He cries the needed warning
To steer the ragged line,

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By unknown lake and river,
O’er hills of spruce and pine.

He knows the Fundy shore-line,
The dark Laurentian peaks,
And where prepared lies waiting

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The feeding-ground he seeks,—

Where the first warmth of April
Is stirring in the sedge,
And the last ice is melting
Along the lake’s blue edge.

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Unquestioning he follows
The lead that lures him forth
For Athabascan reed-beds
And the Sunlands of the North.

Behind him press the legions,

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The drive that must prevail;
Before him lie the wonder,
The whisper and the trail.

He may not doubt nor falter,
He may not quit nor tire

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Who leads the lusty migrants
To the waters of desire.

O you who hear the music
Within the April rain,
And send your hearts to journey

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With Wawa and his train,

You too shall learn the magic
That makes the woodlands ring,—
The mystery that fashions
The beauty of the spring.

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In sugar bush and orchard
The sap is sweet and strong,
And meadow lot and clearing
Are waiting for their song.

Then with the quickened joyance

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Lift up your hearts on high,
To the gospel of enchantment
Announced along the sky.

You truly shall inherit
The land of Wawa’s dream,

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And Wawa’s God shall lead you
Beside his silver stream.

Then fear no more, you faithful
Who in the Earthland dwell.
Hark to the old goose honking,

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’Tis Spring and all is well!

Hear the voice of Wawa in the midnight
O’er the stirring land that lies below!
Hear the word of Wawa on the long trail
Where the hidden wisdom bids him go!

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Get you to the wilds again with Wawa,—
Who can tell what secrets you shall know!