The James Hearst Digital Archive

Home » Poetry » Emerson's Page

Emerson's Page

Text of Poem

His neighbors scratched
          stones from their land,
but Emerson with
          practiced hand

rifled their secrets
          as he read,
A stone is a granite
          book, he said.

Stones break plows
          hidden from sight
and farmers answer
          with dynamite.

But will by force
          is not the sun
to ripen truth,
          said Emerson,

a pine tree’s wisdom
          speaks in cones.
He went on reading
          brooks and stones.

First Line
His Neighbors scratched
Original Pub Location
Original Publication Date
Original Citation
Educational Leadership 17 (Oct. 1959) 10,
Complete Poems
Hearst Collections
Word Count
Poetic Form
References and Commentary
Emily Dickinson called Emerson's Representative Men ‘a little granite book you can lean on…' re: lines 7-8.
Bibliographic Notes

Same poem but with significant changes. Published as "The Sage and Stones" in Limited View. First line in "The Sage," "His neighbors farmed" Could have entries for both. On file.