“The Wide Outdoors”
The rich may pay for orchids rare, but, Oh the apple tree
Flings out its blossoms to the world for every eye to see,
And all who sigh for loveliness may walk beneath the sky
And claim a richer beauty than man’s gold can ever buy.
The blooming cherry trees are free for all to look upon;
The dogwood buds for all of us, and not some favorite one;
The wide outdoors is no man’s own; the stranger on the street
Can cast his eyes on many a rose and claim its fragrance sweet.
Small gardens are shut in by walls, but none can wall the sky,
And none can hide the friendly trees from all who travel by;
And none can hold the apple boughs and claim them for his own,
For all the beauties of the earth belong to God alone.
So let me walk the world just now and wander far and near;
Earth’s loveliness is mine to see, its music mine to hear;
There’s not a single apple bough that spills its blooms about
But I can claim the joy of it, and none can shut me out.
by Edgar Albert Guest