Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
America: Vols. XXV–XXIX. 1876–79.

New England: Blue Mountains, Me.

The Presence

By Lucy Larcom (1826–1893)

THE MOUNTAIN statelier lifts his blue-veiled head,

While, drawing near, we meet him face to face.

Here, as on holy ground, we softly tread;

Yet, with a tender and paternal grace,

He gives the wild-flowers in his lap a place:

They climb his sides, as fondled infants might,

And wind around him, in a light embrace,

Their summer drapery, pink and clinging white.

Great hearts have largest room to bless the small;

Strong natures give the weaker home and rest:

So Christ took little children to his breast,

And, with a reverence more profound, we fall

In the majestic presence that can give

Truth’s simplest message: “’T is by love ye live.”