Lelawala: The Maid of the Mist by Lini Grol

grol lelawala
Lelawala – scissorcut by Lini Grol, 1996

(From an old Indian legend of the maiden and
her lover who went over Niagara Falls)

Lelawala, Lelawala,
The beautiful Lelawala
With the light of the moon in her hair.
Lelawala, Lelawala,
With the warmth of a fire in her voice;
And her eyes — Lelawala —
With the grace
And the gentleness of a doe.
Lelawala, Lelawala,
With the swiftness of a swallow
To help those in sorrow.
Lelawala, Lelawala,
With the wisdom of owls, Lelawala,
With a heart warm for everyone;
Lelawala, Lelawala,
To good for any man, meant for a god.

Source: Grol, Lini, ed. by Kevin McCabe and Lynne Prunskus. Lake to Lake: Lini Grol’s Niagara.  St. Catharines: Blarney Stone Books, c2000.

Niagara by Arthur William Fisher

Niagara by Arthur William Fisher
Portrait of Arthur William Fisher
                        I

NIAGARA, how charms thy name
    Resounding from thy high walled sheer!
How sweet thy water's far acclaim
    That bursts upon my pricking ear!
How beams my eye with kindling flame
    As to thy presence I draw near,
Where beautied grandure's falling swell
Weaves still time's awful, mystic spell!

I gaze at thee from nearest shore,
    Close by the impending brink,
In wonder at thy fearful pour
Of waters, til, amazèd more
    Than I can tell or think,
I only see thy mist's fine shower
    That wafts upon these walls,
And vision dim that mighty Power,
    The Great Spirit of the Falls.

                    II

But lo ! up stream, in fitful dream,
    The rolling, rumbling rapids roar,
And toss and tilt and turn and teem,
And gurgle in their cascades' gleam
    From isle to isle and isle to shore;
        And oft repeat the dazzling feat,
Display their leaping wonders more,
Rush round the rocks with flaring locks,
Lead as bellweathers do their flocks,
    While through their tree-trimmed way they pour,
        These bounding waters, fleet, more fleet,
To gather in one onward rush
    Adown their troubled, rocky bed,
And struggle, straggle, gurgle, gush,
    To follow where their leaders led;
        But panting now for breath,
            They stagger to the edge
            Of overhanging ledge,
        Fearing the plunge beneath;
When forth in foam their fellows come,
Cheering and jeering the faltering and fearing,
Till onto the precipice they rush with a roar,
Exulting and leaping, as comrades before;
Yet staring, stumbling, crashing, crumbling,
    As host with host o'erpowering,
Each glistening wight of air commingled,
    They fall in gulf devouring;
Or, flaring, flashing, darting, dashing,
    To break as gleaming snow,
While splitting, splashing, gnawing, gnashing
    Upon the rocks below;
Whence o'er the heights their spirits towering,
Sweeping, swaying, rising, lowering,
    Rejoin the ceaseless flow,
That with recurring, falling shock,
    Born on the wind's bluff blast,
Wears e'er amain the shelving rock,
    And undermines aghast.
    There as by mighty hand,
A cavern forms, carved by the storms
    Of vexed spray's pelting wave;
    And in that rocky cave
Rough columns stand with altar grand;
    While fittingly conforms
The spray-worn dome and bowlder pave,
Round which reëcho e'er a stave
    Of wailing wind's weird band;
And there before the cavern door,
Attended with intoning roar,
    E'er falls the Bridal Veil
    And sweeps the filmy rail,
Which now through Bridal Hall are fanned,
Now screen that Wind's Cave from the land. 
 Continue reading "Niagara  by Arthur William Fisher" 

Niagara Falls – The paradise on earth by Rakhi Jain

Someone once told me, ‘seeing is believing’,
How pertinent that was, I found after exploring,
This artwork of nature, beauty sprinkled everywhere,
The raging river, the fretted fall, the magical mist, that I wish to share.

The white foamy flow,
the mighty wind that blows,
The sunshine is golden,
surely I can say, my heart is stolen!

The rainbow that joins, the heaven to this earth,
The beauty I feel, is in no way dearth,
So much of joy, so much of pleasure,
This lovely sight does have to offer.

The ‘maid of the mist’, lets you meet it face to face,
The gusts, the downdrafts, can’t help but blaze,
‘Journey behind the falls’, leaves you dazed,
With the beauty, enigma and the amazing grace

The gush of water, is though fierce and harsh,
falling down with so much of splash!
But as it descends, the resplendence is endless,
Down as it reaches, it turns into an angel!

This is the moral, it bestows upon us,
Whatever pinnacle we may achieve, let us not lose our humility!

Copyright @ Rakhi

Source: Haryana Online, 2004

Niagara Falls by Anonymous

(Song of the year, 1841)

Oh the lovers come a thousand miles,
They leave their home and mother;
Yet when they reach Niagara Falls
They only see each other.

See Niagara's waters rolling,
See the misty spray;
See the happy lovers strolling,
It's everybody's wedding day.

To see the Falls they took a ride
On the steamship "Maid O' the Mist";
She forgot the Falls she was so busy
Being hugged and kissed.

See the mighty river rushing
'Tween its rocky walls;
See the happy lovers strolling
By our Niagara Falls.

He said, "Is oo my darling?"
He said, "Whose darling is oo?"
He said, "Is oo my baby?"
And she always answered, "Goo-goo-goo."

Source: Dwight Whalen. Lover’s Guide to Niagara Falls. Niagara Falls: Horseshoe Press, 1990.