Home  »  A Collection of Verse by California Poets  »  Invocation to California

Augustin S. Macdonald, comp. A Collection of Verse by California Poets. 1914.

By Charles Keeler

Invocation to California

GUERDON of gold of the sun is thy treasure

From glist’ning Sierra to foam of the ocean,

With fair flower-children in hosts beyond measure

To yield thee their beauty with boundless devotion!

Royal the reaches of wheat in the valley!

Abundance has blessed the wide wastes of the plain,

And hosts of the strong-handed harvesters rally

At dawn-flush to garner the glittering grain.

Full hang thy orchards with fruitage of summer,

Thy citrons ’mid blossoms bless winter and spring,

But autumn, the radiant year-cycle’s last comer,

Bears, clustered in purple, the grape which is king.

Gold, in thy rock-girded fastnesses hidden,

The magic of science shall wrest from its store;

Insatiate progress, advancing, has bidden

That bounty of earth be for man evermore:

For man as a trust and a torch, not to squander

In riotous revel through profitless years,

But a power that bids him to pause and to ponder

On being and beauty, on triumph and tears!

Here, here where the breezes of freedom are blowing,

Shall beauty burst into full flow’rage to-day,

And the will to do right shall, in proud hearts, be growing,

With might to command and with strength to obey.