An Early Morning Ride.
By James D. Dowling
The Wheelman. September, 1883, pp. 426-427.
Away, away, my wheel and I,
The roadside fences past us fly,
With downward push and circling round
We scarcely seem to touch the ground.
The freshening breeze dissolves the mist,
Which rolling o'er the mountain kiss't,
That dewy kiss the mountain thrills,
And answers with a thousand rills,
Whose limpid waters leap and flow
Down to thirsty plains below.
Our quickening breath and bounding heart
Make us of nature feel a part;
The eye takes in the landscape wide
When out upon a morning ride.
How glad and gay the whole earth seems,
Emerging from the night's dark beams!
The birds, upborne on buoyant wing,
From tree and bush their anthems sing;
The lowing kine, in meadows green,
Beside our pathway often seen,
Look o'er with large and wondering eye
As we, all noiseless, pass them by.
The rising sun begins to throw
His beams o'er all the scene below,
And brightens as his glances pass
The dew-drop on each blade of grass.
The leaves upon the tree-tops high
Dance gayly 'gainst the bright blue sky,
Where fleecy clouds are backward drawn
Before the roseate ones of morn.
The waning moon with faded ray
Retires before the orb of day.
With tightened hands and urging strength
We've gained the summit steep at length,
And from its top drink in the scene,
As fair as e'en the poets dream.
Here sparkling in the morning sun
How swift the river seems to run!
How smoothly o'er the dewy grass
The moving clouds their shadows pass!
How blue the sky! How green the trees!
How every object tries to please!
No hint is here of cent per cent,
No lawyers eager on the scent,
No criminal with fearful eye
Escaping from the hue-and-cry
With which man hunts his fellow-man,
Forgetful of the loving plan
The Master came on earth to teach;
"Have loving thoughts each one to each";
But soon with faces homeward turned,
With whirling wheels the ground is spurned,
And down the hill with flying pace
Lead Father Time a breathless race.
Turn, turn, my wheel, as free birds wing,
Thou bearest me like a living thing.
My pulses throb, my heart beats wild,
O'er this the nineteenth century's child.
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