Carl Sandburg on prairie neighbors

Carl Sandburg won the 1940 Pulitzer Prize for part of his six volume biography of Lincoln. Rebecca West remarked that ``he is, like Burns, a national poet,'' whose ``lines will not reveal their music ... unless they are read with a Middle Western accent.'' These poems are from ``Good Morning, America,'' and ``The People, Yes,'' published by Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Inc. Field People In the morning eyes of the brown-eyed Susans, in the toadflax sheaves smiling butter-and-eggs, in the white mushrooms sprung from air into air since yesterday morning, since yesterday evening, in the corn row corridor walls of cornstalks - the same southwest wind comes again, knowing -

How the field people go away, the corn row people, the toadflax, mushroom,

thistlebloom people, how they rise, sing songs they learn, and then go away, leaving in the air no last will and testament at all, leaving no last whisper at all on how this sister, that brother, those friends, such and such a sweetheart is remembered with a gold leaf, a cup rainbow home, a cricket's hut for counting its summer heartbeats, a caught shimmer of one haunted moonray to be passed on -

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the running southwest wind knows them all.

The People, Yes: #12 The scaffolding holds the arch in place till the keystone is put in to stay. Then the scaffolding comes out. Then the arch stands strong as all the massed pressing parts of the arch and loose as any sag or spread failing of the builders' intention, hope.

``The arch never sleeps.''

Living in union it holds. So long as each piece does its work the arch is alive, singing, a restless choral.

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