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February 11th, 2016 - we have 234 poets, 8,025 poems and 311,705 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
18544 The Flower-Fed Buffaloes Comments and analysis of The Flower-Fed Buffaloes by Vachel Lindsay 128 Comments
13128 Abraham Lincoln Walks at Midnight Comments and analysis of Abraham Lincoln Walks at Midnight by Vachel Lindsay 519 Comments
10442 The Little Turtle Comments and analysis of The Little Turtle by Vachel Lindsay 4 Comments
10184 The Proud Farmer
10046 Love and Law Comments and analysis of Love and Law by Vachel Lindsay 21 Comments
9316 A Sense of Humor Comments and analysis of A Sense of Humor by Vachel Lindsay 11 Comments
9056 The Eagle That is Forgotten Comments and analysis of The Eagle That is Forgotten by Vachel Lindsay 24 Comments
8109 Drying Their Wings
8000 The Rose of Midnight Comments and analysis of The Rose of Midnight by Vachel Lindsay 7 Comments
7801 A Rhyme About an Electrical Advertising Sign Comments and analysis of A Rhyme About an Electrical Advertising Sign by Vachel Lindsay 441 Comments
7496 The Hope of the Resurrection Comments and analysis of The Hope of the Resurrection by Vachel Lindsay 3 Comments
7450 On The Garden Wall Comments and analysis of On The Garden Wall by Vachel Lindsay 3 Comments
6833 The Moon's the North Wind's Cooky Comments and analysis of The Moon's the North Wind's Cooky by Vachel Lindsay 12 Comments
6297 An Indian Summer Day on the Prarie Comments and analysis of An Indian Summer Day on the Prarie by Vachel Lindsay 14 Comments
6243 Our Mother Pocahontas Comments and analysis of Our Mother Pocahontas by Vachel Lindsay 18 Comments
5919 The Broncho That Would Not Be Broken Comments and analysis of The Broncho That Would Not Be Broken by Vachel Lindsay 7 Comments
5863 The Mysterious Cat Comments and analysis of The Mysterious Cat by Vachel Lindsay 13 Comments
5623 In Memory of a Child Comments and analysis of In Memory of a Child by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
5533 Written for a Musician
5198 This Section is a Christmas Tree Comments and analysis of This Section is a Christmas Tree by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
5188 Prologue to "Rhymes to be Traded for Bread"
4907 Sunshine
4831 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 204 Comments
4779 Two Old Crows Comments and analysis of Two Old Crows by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
4497 General William Booth Enters into Heaven Comments and analysis of General William Booth Enters into Heaven by Vachel Lindsay 5 Comments
4420 What the Ghost of the Gambler Said
4400 The Perfect Marriage Comments and analysis of The Perfect Marriage by Vachel Lindsay 9 Comments
3867 The Potatoes' Dance Comments and analysis of The Potatoes' Dance by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
3860 Genesis Comments and analysis of Genesis by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
3821 The Scissors-Grinder
3715 The Moon is a Painter Comments and analysis of The Moon is a Painter by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
3675 The Chinese Nightingale Comments and analysis of The Chinese Nightingale by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
3560 On the Garden Wall
3544 How a Little Girl Danced
3467 St. Francis of Assisi Comments and analysis of St. Francis of Assisi by Vachel Lindsay 21 Comments
3451 The Lion
3381 Star of My Heart Comments and analysis of Star of My Heart by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
3319 To Lady Jane
3318 Mae Marsh, Motion Picture Actress Comments and analysis of Mae Marsh, Motion Picture Actress by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
3314 The Spider and the Ghost of the Fly
3310 Ghosts in Love Comments and analysis of Ghosts in Love by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
3195 A Dirge for a Righteous Kitten Comments and analysis of A Dirge for a Righteous Kitten by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
3189 Yankee Doodle Comments and analysis of Yankee Doodle by Vachel Lindsay 12 Comments
3180 The Prarie Battlements
3173 On the Road to Nowhere Comments and analysis of On the Road to Nowhere by Vachel Lindsay 15 Comments
3124 The Ghosts of the Buffaloes
3090 Shakespeare Comments and analysis of Shakespeare by Vachel Lindsay 3 Comments
3060 At Mass Comments and analysis of At Mass by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
3030 Popcorn, Glass Balls, and Cranberries Comments and analysis of Popcorn, Glass Balls, and Cranberries by Vachel Lindsay 13 Comments
3020 The Traveller-Heart
2908 Alone in the Wind, on the Prairie Comments and analysis of Alone in the Wind, on the Prairie by Vachel Lindsay 47 Comments
2877 Elizabeth Barrett Browning
2873 Here's to the Mice! Comments and analysis of Here's to the Mice! by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
2868 Caught in a Net Comments and analysis of Caught in a Net by Vachel Lindsay 13 Comments
2864 The King of Yellow Butterflies
2857 The Wizard in the Street
2832 The Santa-Fe Trail (A Humoresque)
2824 The Cornfields
2804 The Haughty Snail-King
2786 Yet Gentle Will the Griffin Be Comments and analysis of Yet Gentle Will the Griffin Be by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2773 The Merciful Hand
2765 The Spice-Tree Comments and analysis of The Spice-Tree by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
2754 Aladdin and the Jinn
2742 What the Rattlesnake Said
2732 The Strength of the Lonely
2724 Beyond the Moon
2683 What Semiramis Said Comments and analysis of What Semiramis Said by Vachel Lindsay 7 Comments
2675 Heart of God
2647 Mark Twain and Joan of Arc
2609 By the Spring, at Sunset Comments and analysis of By the Spring, at Sunset by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2563 An Argument Comments and analysis of An Argument by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2533 My Lady in Her White Silk Shawl
2452 Upon Returning to the Country Road
2434 The Light o' the Moon Comments and analysis of The Light o' the Moon by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2423 Sweet Briars of the Stairways
2422 The Tree of Laughing Bells
2419 A Prayer to All the Dead among Mine Own People
2419 How a Little Girl Sang
2415 Springfield Magical Comments and analysis of Springfield Magical by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2386 The City That Will Not Repent Comments and analysis of The City That Will Not Repent by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
2370 What the Moon Saw
2364 Queen Mab in the Village
2360 In Praise of Songs that Die Comments and analysis of In Praise of Songs that Die by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2353 Buddha Comments and analysis of Buddha by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2347 A Curse for Kings Comments and analysis of A Curse for Kings by Vachel Lindsay 8 Comments
2325 On Reading Omar Khayyam
2321 Who Knows? Comments and analysis of Who Knows? by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2303 The Sun Says His Prayers Comments and analysis of The Sun Says His Prayers by Vachel Lindsay 8 Comments
2296 Lincoln
2291 The Tale of the Tiger-Tree
2273 Niagara
2254 The Booker Washington Trilogy
2204 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 11 Comments
2182 Incense Comments and analysis of Incense by Vachel Lindsay 2 Comments
2167 The Empty Boats
2139 Our Guardian Angels and Their Children
2133 To Buddha
2128 I Went Down into the Desert
2095 Blanche Sweet
2085 The Raft
2080 The Drunkard's Funeral
2079 Written for a Musician
2071 Darling Daughter of Babylon
2066 An Apology for the Bottle Volcanic
2060 Eden in Winter Comments and analysis of Eden in Winter by Vachel Lindsay 11 Comments
2046 The Song of the Garden-Toad
2041 Why I Voted the Socialist Ticket
2006 The Flower of Mending Comments and analysis of The Flower of Mending by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
2002 The Master of the Dance
1995 When Bryan Speaks
1991 The Fairy Bridal-Hymn Comments and analysis of The Fairy Bridal-Hymn by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
1989 To Mary Pickford Comments and analysis of To Mary Pickford by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
1966 How I Walked Alone in the Jungles of Heaven
1965 Rhymes for Gloriana
1939 Honor Among Scamps
1922 Concerning Emperors
1912 I Heard Immanuel Singing
1890 What the Miner in the Desert Said
1885 On the Building of Springfield
1872 To Reformers in Despair
1854 What the Gray-Winged Fairy Said
1851 Where Is David, the Next King of Israel?
1848 With a Bouquet of Twelve Roses Comments and analysis of With a Bouquet of Twelve Roses by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
1840 When Gassy Thompson Struck It Rich
1835 What the Coal-Heaver Said Comments and analysis of What the Coal-Heaver Said by Vachel Lindsay 8 Comments
1809 Look You, I'll Go Pray
1795 Above the Battle's Front
1787 The Amaranth
1787 Titian
1785 The Beggar's Valentine Comments and analysis of The Beggar's Valentine by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
1779 The Drunkards in the Street
1762 The Hearth Eternal
1708 Sweethearts of the Year
1699 To the United States Senate Comments and analysis of To the United States Senate by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
1633 Where Is the Real Non-Resistant
1596 This, My Song, Is Made For Kerensky
1535 The Encyclopaedia
1519 Epitaphs For Two Players
1516 The Illinois Village
1459 What the Sexton Said
1407 Factory Windows are Always Broken Comments and analysis of Factory Windows are Always Broken by Vachel Lindsay 7 Comments
1089 The Dandelion Comments and analysis of The Dandelion by Vachel Lindsay 3 Comments
958 Euclid Comments and analysis of Euclid by Vachel Lindsay 12 Comments
722 The Unpardonable Sin Comments and analysis of The Unpardonable Sin by Vachel Lindsay 41 Comments
705 The Gamblers Comments and analysis of The Gamblers by Vachel Lindsay 47 Comments
625 How Samson Bore Away the Gates of Gaza Comments and analysis of How Samson Bore Away the Gates of Gaza by Vachel Lindsay 4 Comments
615 Foreign Missions in Battle Array Comments and analysis of Foreign Missions in Battle Array by Vachel Lindsay 17 Comments
609 The Firemen's Ball Comments and analysis of The Firemen's Ball by Vachel Lindsay 12 Comments
564 To Jane Addams at the Hague
546 The Alchemist's Petition Comments and analysis of The Alchemist's Petition by Vachel Lindsay 10 Comments
519 The Angel and the Clown
497 A Net to Snare the Moonlight
478 The Black Hawk War of the Artists
464 The Bankrupt Peace-Maker Comments and analysis of The Bankrupt Peace-Maker by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
408 Epilogue
345 The Leaden-Eyed Comments and analysis of The Leaden-Eyed by Vachel Lindsay 291 Comments
219 The Congo: A Study of the Negro Race Comments and analysis of The Congo: A Study of the Negro Race by Vachel Lindsay 242 Comments
173 The Sorceress!
169 The Queen of Bubbles
96 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
87 Michaelangelo Comments and analysis of Michaelangelo by Vachel Lindsay 6 Comments
81 The Knight in Disguise
69 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 14 Comments
66 The Trap Comments and analysis of The Trap by Vachel Lindsay 1 Comment
58 To Gloriana
55 King Arthur's Men Have Come Again
39 Galahad, Knight Who Perished
12 The Jingo and the Minstrel


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