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All day long they rush and roar,
And sing their mad song o'er and o'er;
All night long they roar and rush,
And the deep forest's solemn hush
Disturb, as down the mountain-side,
Now like a rivulet, then wide,
And wider still, they take their way
'Neath sunlight and thro' shadows gray.
Thro' day and night, as years go by,
Heedless of storm or summer sky,
Unmindful of our smiles or tears,
Unmindful of our hopes and fears,
Living their own wild lives so free,
And singing their own songs merrily.
Now plunging swift o'er rock and crag,
Now creeping steadily among
The ferns and grasses by the way,
Then broadening till their foam is flung
At last adown the terraced bank,
Where cling the tangled vines so sweet,
Leaping from stone to stone until
Their lives the river-waters meet,
And wrestling with the currents there,
At last the river's burdens share.