Among the delicate, delightful
creatures in the musical menagerie,
the most alarming, even frightening
animal to a child of two or three
is the organ, Behemoth of the Zoo.
It’s bellows pump thunder of heavens,
roars from the bottomless pits of hell,
and yet its Stop can part the burly clouds
with sunlit, spearing jigs or gossamer fugue
crawling from spine to cerebellum joy.
And between all extremes of feeling,
tone-colors to shade every listing mood
emerge like the swell of brook and stream
flowing into mighty rivers mouthing
an ocean of eternal time and night!
The range of the organ remains unsurpassed:
it is in itself an orchestra of fifty
with one dexterous conductor pedaling
like champion cyclist up a mountain
for glorious, panoramic view
that may convert a person of open mind
to fall to knee in sudden, awed wonder,
as tiny bones tingle, reverberate
like reeds waving in brown bracken marsh
while sunlight beams down in burnished glory!