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April 27th, 2015 - we have 234 poets, 8,025 poems and 288,299 comments.
Biography of Vachel Lindsay

Vachel Lindsay

Vachel Lindsay (1879 - 1931)

Vachel Lindsay -- poet, idealist, troubador -- is sometimes called Springfield's "second most famous" son. He was born in Springfield in 1879 and always considered the Capitol City his home.

Like any youngster growing up in Central Illinois, Lindsay was schooled in the virtues of Abraham Lincoln, Springfield's most famous resident. He, like Lincoln, was fascinated by the common people, and much of his poetry reflected that fascination.

Young Lindsay, whose full name was Nicholas Vachel Lindsay, attended Hiram College in Hiram, Ohio, for three years before studying art in Chicago and New York City. He later turned to poetry, a medium which was more successful for him.

He first received recognition in 1913, when "Poetry" magazine published his poem "General William Booth Enters into Heaven" about the founder of The Salvation Army. Racial harmony was a concern of Lindsay's. "The Congo," a poem about blacks, was one of his most famous and popular poems.

Lindsay spent much of his life walking across the country, performing and distributing copies of his poetry in exchange for bed and board. Lindsay's poems were very rhythmic, and he performed them almost melodramatically -- chanting, shouting, gesturing, and even singing rather than merely reciting.

Lindsay married Elizabeth Connor in 1925 when he was 45 and she was 23. They had two children, Susan in 1926 and Nicholas in 1927. They settled in Vachel's family home in Springfield in 1929.

The poet's career declined during the 1920s. He began to believe that people were only impressed with his powerful performances, not the poetry itself.

Lindsay became severely depressed as both his creativity and his popularity waned; he committed suicide in 1931 by drinking poison.

Lindsay's verse is characterized by its lyric quality and its simple, forceful rhythms. Among his volumes of poetry are The Congo and Other Poems (1914) and Every Soul Is a Circus (1929)



168 Poems written by Vachel Lindsay

The poems are by default sorted according to volume, but you can also choose to sort them alphabetically or by page views.

Volume | Alphabetically | [Page Views] | Comments | First Lines


Page ViewsPoemComments
18289 The Flower-Fed Buffaloes Comments and analysis of The Flower-Fed Buffaloes by Vachel Lindsay 118 Comments
12625 Abraham Lincoln Walks at Midnight Comments and analysis of Abraham Lincoln Walks at Midnight by Vachel Lindsay 514 Comments
10090 The Little Turtle Comments and analysis of The Little Turtle by Vachel Lindsay 4 Comments
9899 The Proud Farmer
9827 Love and Law Comments and analysis of Love and Law by Vachel Lindsay 13 Comments
9091 A Sense of Humor Comments and analysis of A Sense of Humor by Vachel Lindsay 11 Comments
8772 The Eagle That is Forgotten Comments and analysis of The Eagle That is Forgotten by Vachel Lindsay 18 Comments
7828 Drying Their Wings
7672 The Rose of Midnight Comments and analysis of The Rose of Midnight by Vachel Lindsay 6 Comments
7515 A Rhyme About an Electrical Advertising Sign Comments and analysis of A Rhyme About an Electrical Advertising Sign by Vachel Lindsay 431 Comments
7271 The Hope of the Resurrection Comments and analysis of The Hope of the Resurrection by Vachel Lindsay 3 Comments
7204 On The Garden Wall Comments and analysis of On The Garden Wall by Vachel Lindsay 3 Comments
6382 The Moon's the North Wind's Cooky Comments and analysis of The Moon's the North Wind's Cooky by Vachel Lindsay 4 Comments
5981 An Indian Summer Day on the Prarie Comments and analysis of An Indian Summer Day on the Prarie by Vachel Lindsay 10 Comments
5962 Our Mother Pocahontas Comments and analysis of Our Mother Pocahontas by Vachel Lindsay 13 Comments
5634 The Mysterious Cat Comments and analysis of The Mysterious Cat by Vachel Lindsay 12 Comments
5580 The Broncho That Would Not Be Broken Comments and analysis of The Broncho That Would Not Be Broken by Vachel Lindsay 7 Comments
5330 Written for a Musician
5237 In Memory of a Child Comments and analysis of In Memory of a Child by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
5019 This Section is a Christmas Tree Comments and analysis of This Section is a Christmas Tree by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
4972 Prologue to "Rhymes to be Traded for Bread"
4691 Sunshine
4622 The North Star Whispers to the Blacksmith's Son Comments and analysis of The North Star Whispers to the Blacksmith's Son by Vachel Lindsay 202 Comments
4558 Two Old Crows Comments and analysis of Two Old Crows by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
4287 What the Ghost of the Gambler Said
4259 General William Booth Enters into Heaven Comments and analysis of General William Booth Enters into Heaven by Vachel Lindsay 5 Comments
4142 The Perfect Marriage Comments and analysis of The Perfect Marriage by Vachel Lindsay 6 Comments
3665 The Scissors-Grinder
3644 Genesis Comments and analysis of Genesis by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
3563 The Potatoes' Dance Comments and analysis of The Potatoes' Dance by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
3515 The Chinese Nightingale Comments and analysis of The Chinese Nightingale by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
3509 The Moon is a Painter Comments and analysis of The Moon is a Painter by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
3500 To Gloriana
3261 St. Francis of Assisi Comments and analysis of St. Francis of Assisi by Vachel Lindsay 17 Comments
3257 On the Garden Wall
3245 How a Little Girl Danced
3188 Star of My Heart Comments and analysis of Star of My Heart by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
3148 To Lady Jane
3146 Ghosts in Love Comments and analysis of Ghosts in Love by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
3094 The Lion
3031 Mae Marsh, Motion Picture Actress Comments and analysis of Mae Marsh, Motion Picture Actress by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
3021 The Prarie Battlements
3007 A Dirge for a Righteous Kitten Comments and analysis of A Dirge for a Righteous Kitten by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2999 The Spider and the Ghost of the Fly
2998 On the Road to Nowhere Comments and analysis of On the Road to Nowhere by Vachel Lindsay 14 Comments
2991 Yankee Doodle Comments and analysis of Yankee Doodle by Vachel Lindsay 9 Comments
2931 Shakespeare Comments and analysis of Shakespeare by Vachel Lindsay 3 Comments
2909 At Mass Comments and analysis of At Mass by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
2881 The Ghosts of the Buffaloes
2854 The Sorceress!
2850 Popcorn, Glass Balls, and Cranberries Comments and analysis of Popcorn, Glass Balls, and Cranberries by Vachel Lindsay 11 Comments
2815 The Traveller-Heart
2719 Elizabeth Barrett Browning
2687 Here's to the Mice! Comments and analysis of Here's to the Mice! by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
2669 The Santa-Fe Trail (A Humoresque)
2665 The King of Yellow Butterflies
2660 The Haughty Snail-King
2642 Alone in the Wind, on the Prairie Comments and analysis of Alone in the Wind, on the Prairie by Vachel Lindsay 43 Comments
2639 The Wizard in the Street
2628 Yet Gentle Will the Griffin Be Comments and analysis of Yet Gentle Will the Griffin Be by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2617 The Spice-Tree Comments and analysis of The Spice-Tree by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
2611 The Merciful Hand
2566 Aladdin and the Jinn
2544 The Trap Comments and analysis of The Trap by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2533 What Semiramis Said Comments and analysis of What Semiramis Said by Vachel Lindsay 6 Comments
2532 The Strength of the Lonely
2526 Beyond the Moon
2519 The Queen of Bubbles
2513 Heart of God
2509 Mark Twain and Joan of Arc
2502 What the Rattlesnake Said
2414 By the Spring, at Sunset Comments and analysis of By the Spring, at Sunset by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2387 My Lady in Her White Silk Shawl
2383 An Argument Comments and analysis of An Argument by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2361 Caught in a Net Comments and analysis of Caught in a Net by Vachel Lindsay 10 Comments
2287 A Prayer to All the Dead among Mine Own People
2268 Springfield Magical Comments and analysis of Springfield Magical by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2266 How a Little Girl Sang
2263 Sweet Briars of the Stairways
2248 Upon Returning to the Country Road
2238 The Tree of Laughing Bells
2214 The Light o' the Moon Comments and analysis of The Light o' the Moon by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2206 What the Moon Saw
2202 The City That Will Not Repent Comments and analysis of The City That Will Not Repent by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
2190 A Curse for Kings Comments and analysis of A Curse for Kings by Vachel Lindsay 7 Comments
2188 King Arthur's Men Have Come Again
2176 Queen Mab in the Village
2165 On Reading Omar Khayyam
2158 Who Knows? Comments and analysis of Who Knows? by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2148 In Praise of Songs that Die Comments and analysis of In Praise of Songs that Die by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2144 Lincoln
2126 The Sun Says His Prayers Comments and analysis of The Sun Says His Prayers by Vachel Lindsay 8 Comments
2108 The Tale of the Tiger-Tree
2087 Buddha Comments and analysis of Buddha by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2086 Niagara
2080 The Booker Washington Trilogy
2032 The Soul of the City Receives the Gift of the Holy Spirit Comments and analysis of The Soul of the City Receives the Gift of the Holy Spirit by Vachel Lindsay 8 Comments
2003 Incense Comments and analysis of Incense by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
1994 Our Guardian Angels and Their Children
1978 To Buddha
1964 I Went Down into the Desert
1963 The Drunkard's Funeral
1939 Blanche Sweet
1927 Darling Daughter of Babylon
1904 An Apology for the Bottle Volcanic
1901 Written for a Musician
1893 The Empty Boats
1892 The Song of the Garden-Toad
1869 Galahad, Knight Who Perished
1868 We Meet at the Judgment and I Fear It Not Comments and analysis of We Meet at the Judgment and I Fear It Not by Vachel Lindsay 10 Comments
1866 The Raft
1859 Why I Voted the Socialist Ticket
1856 Michaelangelo Comments and analysis of Michaelangelo by Vachel Lindsay 3 Comments
1856 When Bryan Speaks
1847 Eden in Winter Comments and analysis of Eden in Winter by Vachel Lindsay 10 Comments
1839 The Flower of Mending Comments and analysis of The Flower of Mending by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
1838 How I Walked Alone in the Jungles of Heaven
1832 Rhymes for Gloriana
1830 To Mary Pickford Comments and analysis of To Mary Pickford by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
1829 The Master of the Dance
1827 The Fairy Bridal-Hymn Comments and analysis of The Fairy Bridal-Hymn by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
1821 The Wedding of the Rose and the Lotos Comments and analysis of The Wedding of the Rose and the Lotos by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
1800 Honor Among Scamps
1791 Concerning Emperors
1765 I Heard Immanuel Singing
1728 Where Is David, the Next King of Israel?
1712 What the Miner in the Desert Said
1710 With a Bouquet of Twelve Roses Comments and analysis of With a Bouquet of Twelve Roses by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
1709 What the Gray-Winged Fairy Said
1707 When Gassy Thompson Struck It Rich
1701 The Cornfields
1677 On the Building of Springfield
1673 Titian
1658 What the Coal-Heaver Said Comments and analysis of What the Coal-Heaver Said by Vachel Lindsay 4 Comments
1654 The Beggar's Valentine Comments and analysis of The Beggar's Valentine by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
1652 The Amaranth
1646 Above the Battle's Front
1623 The Drunkards in the Street
1623 The Hearth Eternal
1623 To Reformers in Despair
1589 Sweethearts of the Year
1554 To the United States Senate Comments and analysis of To the United States Senate by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
1550 Look You, I'll Go Pray
1488 Where Is the Real Non-Resistant
1444 This, My Song, Is Made For Kerensky
1388 The Illinois Village
1386 The Encyclopaedia
1342 Epitaphs For Two Players
1338 What the Sexton Said
1232 The Congo: A Study of the Negro Race Comments and analysis of The Congo: A Study of the Negro Race by Vachel Lindsay 227 Comments
1057 The Leaden-Eyed Comments and analysis of The Leaden-Eyed by Vachel Lindsay 277 Comments
777 The Dandelion Comments and analysis of The Dandelion by Vachel Lindsay 3 Comments
616 Euclid Comments and analysis of Euclid by Vachel Lindsay 4 Comments
525 The Unpardonable Sin Comments and analysis of The Unpardonable Sin by Vachel Lindsay 38 Comments
509 The Gamblers Comments and analysis of The Gamblers by Vachel Lindsay 43 Comments
470 Factory Windows are Always Broken Comments and analysis of Factory Windows are Always Broken by Vachel Lindsay 7 Comments
441 How Samson Bore Away the Gates of Gaza Comments and analysis of How Samson Bore Away the Gates of Gaza by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
423 The Firemen's Ball Comments and analysis of The Firemen's Ball by Vachel Lindsay 10 Comments
417 Foreign Missions in Battle Array Comments and analysis of Foreign Missions in Battle Array by Vachel Lindsay 15 Comments
399 The Jingo and the Minstrel
380 The Alchemist's Petition Comments and analysis of The Alchemist's Petition by Vachel Lindsay 9 Comments
377 To Jane Addams at the Hague
363 The Knight in Disguise
328 A Net to Snare the Moonlight
322 The Black Hawk War of the Artists
321 The Angel and the Clown
288 The Bankrupt Peace-Maker Comments and analysis of The Bankrupt Peace-Maker by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
271 Epilogue


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