Verse > Anthologies > Hamilton Fish Armstrong, ed. > The Book of New York Verse
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Hamilton Fish Armstrong, ed.  The Book of New York Verse.  1917.
 
Morning in Central Park
By James Oppenheim
 
WHEN the morning sun
Spills his red lights among the naked trees
And one by one
The hills awaken—and like wind-played seas
Give back the music of the breeze,        5
When among film and tracery of boughs
Stripped by the winter’s teeth,
Green glow the sun-filled pines—O man, unhouse
Your head of human walls—get from beneath
Shut ceilings—let the skies take off the roof        10
Of your small room—and into the Park at seven
Go with tremendous stride—
Earth there is open wide
To the sun and the wind and the amplitude of heaven!
 
That Child, the World, from out the infinite night        15
Draws through the dark
Into the light—
And all the sacred mystery of Birth
Hovers on the Earth—
Even in the pale of the man-gardened Park        20
The mystery of Morn, the beauty and the splendor
Through the groves are slipping, from the boughs are dripping,
A miracle without us,
That yet the heart’s core owns!—
Chant there the pebble-tripped waters shut in stones,        25
Sparrows are over the turf chirping and tripping,
And Man’s World sings in a swinging circle about us!
 
O film of ice skimming the crystal pool!
See how it flashes in the wintry sun!
And hear the water splash!—how clean! how cool!        30
And behold how visible, yea, on every one,
The silences of enormous centuries,
Brood on the rocks and the unstirring trees!
 
 
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