The Song of the Camp-Fire, By: Robert W. Service

I

Heed me, feed me, I am hungry, I am red-tongued with desire;

Boughs of balsam, slabs of cedar, gummy fagots of the pine,

Heap them on me, let me hug them to my eager heart of fire,

Roaring, soaring up to heaven as a symbol and a sign.

Bring me knots of sunny maple, silver birch and tamarack;

Leaping, sweeping, I will lap them with my ardent wings of flame;

I will kindle them to glory, I will beat the darkness back;

Streaming, gleaming, I will goad them to my glory and my fame.

Bring me gnarly limbs of live-oak, aid me in my frenzied fight;

Strips of iron-wood, scaly blue-gum, writhing redly in my hold;

With my lunge of lurid lances, with my whips that flail the night,

They will burgeon into beauty, they will foliate in gold.

Let me star the dim sierras, stab with light the inland seas;

Roaming wind and roaring darkness! seek no mercy at my hands;

I will mock the marly heavens, lamp the purple prairies,

I will flaunt my deathless banners down the far, unhouseled lands.

In the vast and vaulted pine-gloom where the pillared forests frown,

By the sullen, bestial rivers running where God only knows,

On the starlit coral beaches when the combers thunder down,

In the death-spell of the barrens, in the shudder of the snows;

In a blazing belt of triumph from the palm-leaf to the pine,

As a symbol of defiance lo! the wilderness I span;

And my beacons burn exultant as an everlasting sign

Of unending domination, of the mastery of Man;

I, the Life, the fierce Uplifter, I that weaned him from the mire;

I, the angel and the devil, I, the tyrant and the slave;

I, the Spirit of the Struggle; I, the mighty God of Fire;

I, the Maker and Destroyer; I, the Giver and the Grave.

***

Dream's Sake

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