Over the course of the six books, I used poems about the lakes and islands as fillers for blank pages. These poems have proven to be quite popular. So, I cave to demand, and present some of the poems that I have found that describe, almost perfectly, what island life is like. Enjoy!
....... By the way, do YOU have a favorite Island poem? Let me know.
by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
This song of mine Is a song of the vine, To be sung by the glowing embers
Of way-side inns When the rain begins, To darken the drear Novembers.
It is not a song Of the Suppernong, From warm Carolinian valleys,
Nor the Isabel, And the Muscadel, That bask in our garden alleys…
For richest and best Is the wine of the West, That grows by the beautiful river
Whose sweet perfume Fills all the room, With a benison on the giver…
Very good in its way Is the Verzenay, Or the Sillery soft and creamy,
But Catawba wine, Has a taste more divine, More dulcet, delicious, and dreamy…
While pure as a spring, Is the wine I sing, And to praise it one needs but name it,
For Catawba wine, Has need of no sign, No tavern-bush to proclaim it.
O, Boatman, row me gently, slow,
Into the golden sunset glow,
That crowns the dying day;
Out where the white cloud islands lie,
In the crimson sea of the western sky,
Row me away, away.
Purple and carmine and amethyst
Waves that touch the sky unkissed,
Leave a luminous trail;
Across it floating a graceful thing;
Is it a bird with a shining wing;
Or a tiny glistening sail?
by Mrs. Emma A. Tiffany
Oh, the beautiful isle of somewhere! That beyond our vision lies;
The rush of the artist hath sketched In crimson and purple dyes.
Oh, the tranquil isle of somewhere! Where the storm-tossed bark finds rest.
Within the harbor its anchor cast. No more the waves ‘twill breast.
Oh, the fragrant isle of somewhere! There blooms rose and eglantine,
And ‘mid the sturdy oak’s foliage, The tender ivy-leaves twine,
Oh, the enchanted isle of somewhere Shall we reach it, you and I;
And bask in the radiant sunlight Of the golden by-and-by?
by Rachel Lyman Field
If once you have slept on an island, you’ll never be quite the same.
You may look as you looked the day before,
and go by the same old name;
You may bustle about in street or shop, you may sit at home and sew;
But you’ll see blue water and wheeling gulls, wherever you may go.
You may chat with neighbors of this and that, and close to your fire keep;
But you’ll hear ship whistle and lighthouse bell and tides beat through your sleep.
Oh! You won’t know why and I can’t say how, such change upon you came;
But once you have slept on an island, you’ll never be quite the same.
by Leslie Korenko (Yes, this one is mine!)
It’s just a short walk to that warm sunny beach;
My toes dig the sand, the waves out of reach.
My eyes water and sting from the sun’s fierce glare,
While overhead, seagulls dip, soar and stare.
What brings this lone person here to our beach;
With day’s end so near and nightfall in reach?
A sad, fading day with a world-weary air,
A day well-used, that was sunny and fair.
Then it happens so fast, with a big orange swirl,
The sun disappears at the edge of the world.
Sometimes so big that it simply hangs there,
And quite often leaving with little fanfare.
Only to explode in rich crimson streaks,
Far across the sky - an experience unique.
Everything is quiet as the air holds it breath,
The day is now ended, it has paid its debt.
Island sunsets, like snowflakes, are never the same,
But what an impression each one remains.
Wiping sand from my feet, I slowly turn home,
Leaving the beach, the spent sunset, and the seagulls alone.
Low in the west the moon's slim crescent swings.
Across the marsh the vesper breezes bear
The sounds of gloaming; from far cornfields fare
The chittering blackbirds, whose ingathering rings
The silken flutter of a myriad wings.
The wild duck's cry floats down the thickening air
As of one hunted, full of fear and care.
Sad twilight comes with dubious whisperings.
How changed from that eultant world which lay
in the wide smile of noon!
The evening's shiver means the day's death;
Its thronging whispers blend with thoughts
That haunt men when their lives must end.
Another dawn may gild a fairer day.
But this day when it dies, is gone forever.
by Arnold F. Elfers, 1913
The rose may bloom for England, The lily for France unfold;
Ireland may honor the Shamrock, And Scotland her thistle bold;
But the shield of Kelley's Island, Shall be with grapes inscrolled.
The arbutus and the goldrod, The heart of the north may cheer,
And the mountain laurel for Maryland, Its royal cluster rear,
And jasmine and magnolia, The crest of the south adorn,
But Kelley's Island emblem, Be rock-vine grape adorned.
by Arnold F. Elfers, 1913
To stroll where the silver-wing sings, To fish where the black bass bound,
And list to the lilt of the waves, Way out in the hush of the earth;
Surrounded by the deep blue sea, From here comes the call to rest.
Away from the noisy old town, Away from the din of the street,
When the leaves and grasses are green, And the aroma of grapes is sweet,
Then comes the call to Kelley Isle.