Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882) was a Massachusetts professor and poet, widely considered to be the most popular American poet of his day. His works include such famous poems as Paul Revere's Ride, Evangeline, and The Song of Hiawatha.
I heard the bells on Christmas day
Their old familiar carols play,
And wild and sweet
the words repeat
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!
And thought how, as the day had come,
The belfries of all Christendom
Had rolled along
the unbroken song
Of peace on earth,...
What the Heart of the Young Man Said to the Psalmist.
Tell me not, in mournful numbers,
"Life is but an empty dream!"
For the soul is dead that slumbers,
And things are not what they seem.
Life is real! Life...
This is the forest primeval. The murmuring pines and the hemlocks,
Bearded with moss, and in garments green, indistinct in the twilight,
Stand like Druids of eld, with voices sad and prophetic,
Stand like harpers hoar, with beards that rest...
"A single conversation across the table with a wise man is better than ten years' mere study of books." –Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Books on the topic of this essay may be found in The Imaginative Conservative Bookstore.