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June 3rd, 2015 - we have 234 poets, 8,025 poems and 288,562 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
18339 The Flower-Fed Buffaloes Comments and analysis of The Flower-Fed Buffaloes by Vachel Lindsay 119 Comments
12716 Abraham Lincoln Walks at Midnight Comments and analysis of Abraham Lincoln Walks at Midnight by Vachel Lindsay 516 Comments
10150 The Little Turtle Comments and analysis of The Little Turtle by Vachel Lindsay 4 Comments
9949 The Proud Farmer
9856 Love and Law Comments and analysis of Love and Law by Vachel Lindsay 13 Comments
9145 A Sense of Humor Comments and analysis of A Sense of Humor by Vachel Lindsay 11 Comments
8829 The Eagle That is Forgotten Comments and analysis of The Eagle That is Forgotten by Vachel Lindsay 18 Comments
7879 Drying Their Wings
7724 The Rose of Midnight Comments and analysis of The Rose of Midnight by Vachel Lindsay 7 Comments
7579 A Rhyme About an Electrical Advertising Sign Comments and analysis of A Rhyme About an Electrical Advertising Sign by Vachel Lindsay 432 Comments
7320 The Hope of the Resurrection Comments and analysis of The Hope of the Resurrection by Vachel Lindsay 3 Comments
7265 On The Garden Wall Comments and analysis of On The Garden Wall by Vachel Lindsay 3 Comments
6450 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
6030 An Indian Summer Day on the Prarie Comments and analysis of An Indian Summer Day on the Prarie by Vachel Lindsay 10 Comments
6003 Our Mother Pocahontas Comments and analysis of Our Mother Pocahontas by Vachel Lindsay 14 Comments
5680 The Mysterious Cat Comments and analysis of The Mysterious Cat by Vachel Lindsay 12 Comments
5645 The Broncho That Would Not Be Broken Comments and analysis of The Broncho That Would Not Be Broken by Vachel Lindsay 7 Comments
5370 In Memory of a Child Comments and analysis of In Memory of a Child by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
5368 Written for a Musician
5061 This Section is a Christmas Tree Comments and analysis of This Section is a Christmas Tree by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
5015 Prologue to "Rhymes to be Traded for Bread"
4726 Sunshine
4661 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 203 Comments
4604 Two Old Crows Comments and analysis of Two Old Crows by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
4308 What the Ghost of the Gambler Said
4300 General William Booth Enters into Heaven Comments and analysis of General William Booth Enters into Heaven by Vachel Lindsay 5 Comments
4182 The Perfect Marriage Comments and analysis of The Perfect Marriage by Vachel Lindsay 6 Comments
3702 Genesis Comments and analysis of Genesis by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
3688 The Scissors-Grinder
3612 The Potatoes' Dance Comments and analysis of The Potatoes' Dance by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
3562 The Moon is a Painter Comments and analysis of The Moon is a Painter by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
3548 The Chinese Nightingale Comments and analysis of The Chinese Nightingale by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
3533 To Gloriana
3302 On the Garden Wall
3292 St. Francis of Assisi Comments and analysis of St. Francis of Assisi by Vachel Lindsay 18 Comments
3289 How a Little Girl Danced
3220 Star of My Heart Comments and analysis of Star of My Heart by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
3190 To Lady Jane
3183 Ghosts in Love Comments and analysis of Ghosts in Love by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
3136 The Lion
3076 Mae Marsh, Motion Picture Actress Comments and analysis of Mae Marsh, Motion Picture Actress by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
3056 A Dirge for a Righteous Kitten Comments and analysis of A Dirge for a Righteous Kitten by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
3054 The Prarie Battlements
3033 On the Road to Nowhere Comments and analysis of On the Road to Nowhere by Vachel Lindsay 15 Comments
3026 The Spider and the Ghost of the Fly
3019 Yankee Doodle Comments and analysis of Yankee Doodle by Vachel Lindsay 9 Comments
2960 Shakespeare Comments and analysis of Shakespeare by Vachel Lindsay 3 Comments
2946 At Mass Comments and analysis of At Mass by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
2920 The Ghosts of the Buffaloes
2898 The Sorceress!
2891 Popcorn, Glass Balls, and Cranberries Comments and analysis of Popcorn, Glass Balls, and Cranberries by Vachel Lindsay 11 Comments
2858 The Traveller-Heart
2754 Elizabeth Barrett Browning
2725 Here's to the Mice! Comments and analysis of Here's to the Mice! by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
2710 The Santa-Fe Trail (A Humoresque)
2708 The King of Yellow Butterflies
2703 Alone in the Wind, on the Prairie Comments and analysis of Alone in the Wind, on the Prairie by Vachel Lindsay 43 Comments
2687 The Haughty Snail-King
2673 The Wizard in the Street
2664 Yet Gentle Will the Griffin Be Comments and analysis of Yet Gentle Will the Griffin Be by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2650 The Spice-Tree Comments and analysis of The Spice-Tree by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
2647 The Merciful Hand
2613 What the Rattlesnake Said
2612 Aladdin and the Jinn
2577 The Strength of the Lonely
2572 Beyond the Moon
2562 The Trap Comments and analysis of The Trap by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2561 What Semiramis Said Comments and analysis of What Semiramis Said by Vachel Lindsay 6 Comments
2543 Heart of God
2535 Mark Twain and Joan of Arc
2462 By the Spring, at Sunset Comments and analysis of By the Spring, at Sunset by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2428 An Argument Comments and analysis of An Argument by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2410 Caught in a Net Comments and analysis of Caught in a Net by Vachel Lindsay 10 Comments
2410 My Lady in Her White Silk Shawl
2318 A Prayer to All the Dead among Mine Own People
2305 Sweet Briars of the Stairways
2295 Springfield Magical Comments and analysis of Springfield Magical by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2294 How a Little Girl Sang
2291 Upon Returning to the Country Road
2274 The Tree of Laughing Bells
2254 The Light o' the Moon Comments and analysis of The Light o' the Moon by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2248 What the Moon Saw
2233 The City That Will Not Repent Comments and analysis of The City That Will Not Repent by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
2225 King Arthur's Men Have Come Again
2224 A Curse for Kings Comments and analysis of A Curse for Kings by Vachel Lindsay 8 Comments
2207 Queen Mab in the Village
2201 In Praise of Songs that Die Comments and analysis of In Praise of Songs that Die by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2199 On Reading Omar Khayyam
2191 Who Knows? Comments and analysis of Who Knows? by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2180 Lincoln
2166 The Sun Says His Prayers Comments and analysis of The Sun Says His Prayers by Vachel Lindsay 8 Comments
2153 The Tale of the Tiger-Tree
2126 Niagara
2117 Buddha Comments and analysis of Buddha by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2100 The Booker Washington Trilogy
2061 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
2045 Incense Comments and analysis of Incense by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
2015 Our Guardian Angels and Their Children
2003 To Buddha
1996 The Empty Boats
1995 I Went Down into the Desert
1984 The Drunkard's Funeral
1975 Blanche Sweet
1964 Darling Daughter of Babylon
1949 An Apology for the Bottle Volcanic
1936 Written for a Musician
1929 The Song of the Garden-Toad
1916 The Raft
1908 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
1908 Why I Voted the Socialist Ticket
1902 Galahad, Knight Who Perished
1900 Eden in Winter Comments and analysis of Eden in Winter by Vachel Lindsay 10 Comments
1883 Michaelangelo Comments and analysis of Michaelangelo by Vachel Lindsay 3 Comments
1881 When Bryan Speaks
1872 The Master of the Dance
1868 The Flower of Mending Comments and analysis of The Flower of Mending by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
1867 To Mary Pickford Comments and analysis of To Mary Pickford by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
1864 How I Walked Alone in the Jungles of Heaven
1863 The Fairy Bridal-Hymn Comments and analysis of The Fairy Bridal-Hymn by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
1859 Rhymes for Gloriana
1854 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
1827 Honor Among Scamps
1821 Concerning Emperors
1789 I Heard Immanuel Singing
1762 What the Miner in the Desert Said
1750 Where Is David, the Next King of Israel?
1745 What the Gray-Winged Fairy Said
1734 When Gassy Thompson Struck It Rich
1732 With a Bouquet of Twelve Roses Comments and analysis of With a Bouquet of Twelve Roses by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
1723 The Cornfields
1711 On the Building of Springfield
1691 Titian
1680 What the Coal-Heaver Said Comments and analysis of What the Coal-Heaver Said by Vachel Lindsay 4 Comments
1679 Above the Battle's Front
1676 The Beggar's Valentine Comments and analysis of The Beggar's Valentine by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
1675 The Amaranth
1661 To Reformers in Despair
1655 The Drunkards in the Street
1650 The Hearth Eternal
1607 Sweethearts of the Year
1592 Look You, I'll Go Pray
1578 To the United States Senate Comments and analysis of To the United States Senate by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
1524 Where Is the Real Non-Resistant
1475 This, My Song, Is Made For Kerensky
1418 The Encyclopaedia
1416 The Illinois Village
1380 Epitaphs For Two Players
1352 What the Sexton Said
1307 The Congo: A Study of the Negro Race Comments and analysis of The Congo: A Study of the Negro Race by Vachel Lindsay 229 Comments
1129 The Leaden-Eyed Comments and analysis of The Leaden-Eyed by Vachel Lindsay 280 Comments
842 The Dandelion Comments and analysis of The Dandelion by Vachel Lindsay 3 Comments
687 Euclid Comments and analysis of Euclid by Vachel Lindsay 4 Comments
609 Factory Windows are Always Broken Comments and analysis of Factory Windows are Always Broken by Vachel Lindsay 7 Comments
569 The Unpardonable Sin Comments and analysis of The Unpardonable Sin by Vachel Lindsay 40 Comments
542 The Gamblers Comments and analysis of The Gamblers by Vachel Lindsay 45 Comments
489 How Samson Bore Away the Gates of Gaza Comments and analysis of How Samson Bore Away the Gates of Gaza by Vachel Lindsay 3 Comments
469 The Firemen's Ball Comments and analysis of The Firemen's Ball by Vachel Lindsay 10 Comments
453 Foreign Missions in Battle Array Comments and analysis of Foreign Missions in Battle Array by Vachel Lindsay 15 Comments
424 The Jingo and the Minstrel
418 To Jane Addams at the Hague
405 The Knight in Disguise
404 The Alchemist's Petition Comments and analysis of The Alchemist's Petition by Vachel Lindsay 9 Comments
370 A Net to Snare the Moonlight
366 The Angel and the Clown
348 The Black Hawk War of the Artists
337 The Bankrupt Peace-Maker Comments and analysis of The Bankrupt Peace-Maker by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
291 Epilogue
26 The Queen of Bubbles


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