I am Tacoma, Monarch of the Coast!
Uncounted ages heaped my shining snows;
The sun by day, by night the starry host,
Crown me with splendor; every breeze that blows
Wafts incense to my altars; never wanes
The glory my adoring children boast,
For one with sun and sea Tacoma reigns.
Tacoma—the Great Snow Peak—mighty name
My dusky tribes revered when time was young!
Their god was I in avalanche and flame—
In grove and mead and songs my rivers sung,
As blithe they ran to make the valleys fair—
Their Shrine of Peace where no avenger came
To vex Tacoma, lord of earth and air.
Ah! when at morn above the mists I tower
And see my cities gleam by slope and strand,
What joy have I in this transcendent dower—
The strength and beauty of my sea-girt land
That holds the future royally in fee!
And lest some danger, undescried, should lower,
From my far height I watch o’er wave and lea.
And cloudless eves when calm in heaven I rest,
All rose-bloom with a glow of paradise,
And through my firs the balm-wind of the west,
Blown over ocean islands, softly sighs,
While placid lakes my radiant image frame—
And know my worshippers, in loving quest,
Will mark my brow and fond lips breathe my name:
Enraptured from my valleys to my snows,
I charm my glow to crimson—soothe to gray;
And when the encircling shadow deeper grows,
Poise, a lone cloud, beside the starry way.
Then, while my realm is hushed from steep to shore,
I yield my grandeur to divine repose,
And know Tacoma reigns forevermore!
(Note: The mountain described in this poem is known today as Mt. Rainier. To the Natives long ago, Mt. Rainier was called Tacoma.)