Transcription Notes:

This Internet file is not an exact copy of the book. There are a few typographic errors corrected, probably others regretfully added, and some formatting changed. Page numbers are marked by the titles of poems, not by actual page breaks, so some page numbers appear twice, others not at all.

This book was originally printed with no artwork, table of contents, or index. ToC and indexes in this file have been compiled by Owen Lorion for the MPS. The hard copy of this chapbook was borrowed, with thanks, from the library of Soccorro Lodge #9, New Mexico.


Table of Contents

  Transciber's notes
 Table of Contents
1Title page
Songs of the Lodge
3Warmth And WelcomeH.L. Haywood
3I Sat In Lodge With YouWilbur D. Nesbit
5EchoesDouglas Malloch
6Father's LodgeDouglas Malloch
7The Little Lodge Of Long AgoDouglas Malloch
Songs of the Brotherhood
9Good FellowshipWilbur D. Nesbit
10We Are Two BrothersH.L. Haywood
11Are You A Man?W.R. Shields
12He Is A Man — My BrotherHenry Nehemiah Dodge
13The Good WordWilbur D. Nesbit
Songs of the Masonic Life
15SonnetCarl H. Claudy
15When Are You A Mason?Wilbur D. Nesbit
16Always A MasonDouglas Malloch
17Be On GuardWilbur D. Nesbit
19Members Or MasonsDouglas Malloch
20The Men Of TyreWilbur D. Nesbit
Songs of the Working Tools
22The GaugeR.J. McLauchlin
23The GavelR.J. McLauchlin
24The PlumbR.J. McLauchlin
26The LevelR.J. McLauchlin
27The SquareR.J. McLauchlin
Songs of the Seasons
28April In The Blue LodgeWilbur D. Nesbit
29The Masonry Of SpringDouglas Malloch
30God's FreemasonryH.L. Haywood
32Make Me MellowDouglas Malloch
32A Day Of ThanksgivingWilbur D. Nesbit
34A Mason's BirthdayWilbur D. Nesbit
35ChristmasDouglas Malloch
36The Christmas LodgeWilbur D. Nesbit
Songs of the Builders
38My TempleGeorge H. Free
39The Hundred YearsWilbur D. Nesbit
40The Road Of MasonryDouglas Malloch
41The CornerstoneR.J. McLauchlin
42The Laying Of The CornerstoneR.J. McLauchlin
43Corn, Wine And OilWilbur D. Nesbit
44BuildingDouglas Malloch
45In Time Of DedicationWilbur D. Nesbit
48The Death Of The MasterH.L. Haywood
Alphabetical Index by Title
Alphabetical Index by Author
Alphabetical Index by First Line
  Review from The Builder

1 - Title page
Dollar Masonic Library
In Ten Volumes: Number II

Songs of the


and others

Commission on Masonic Education
Masonic Temple, Detroit, Mich.
Board of General Activities
Masonic Hall, New York


The Commission on Masonic Education of the Grand Lodge of Michigan and the Board of General Activities of the Grand Lodge of New York, as the names imply, are non-commercial agencies acting as service stations for the Craft. One of their objects is to promote (not to censor) Masonic reading and study. No individual derives any profit from their activities. Any surplus is devoted to additional service. Any book on Freemasonry or related subjects, wherever published, can be obtained from one of these agencies. Address the one which is nearer to you.

Full description and price of any book that you are interested in, and advice in the choice of books, free on request. No service charges. Letters about books always welcome. Tell us what Masonic books you own, or have read, and we can suggest others in which you might be interested.

Commission on Masonic Education
Masonic Temple, Detroit, Mich.

Board of General Activities
Masonic Hall, New York

Printed in the United States of America

Copyright by the Masonic News


Songs of the Lodge


Warmth And Welcome

by H.L. Haywood

Across the crowd-thronged city ways
When night hangs black and friendless there,
A tide of strangers ebbs and plays
Along each cheerless thoroughfare,
And never a face lights up to see
One's self to pass, and none to care
How lone and weary one may be.

'Tis then unto one's Lodge one turns
For there he finds within the door
The fire of hearty welcome burns:
If one's not known its flames the more
Send forth a warmth his breast to fill
Until he finds his joy returns
Within that haven of good will.

The Mason's secret lies in this, —
"A stranger here, ye took me in";
Its Royal Art would stray amiss
Amid the world's harsh hue and din
If warmth and welcome were to die;
Its greatest strength in these consists;
Of these is made its Mystic Tie.


I Sat In Lodge With You

by Wilbur D. Nesbit

There is a saying filled with cheer,
Which calls a man to fellowship.
It means as much for him to hear
As lies within the brother-grip.
Nay, more! It opens wide the way
To friendliness sincere and true;
There are no strangers when you say
To me: "I sat in Lodge with you."

When that is said, then I am known;
There is no questioning or doubt;
I need not walk my path alone,
Nor from my fellows be shut out.
These words hold all of brotherhood
And help me face the world anew —
There's something deep and rich and good
In this: "I sat in Lodge with you."

Though in far lands one needs must roam,
By sea and shore and hill and plain,
Those words bring him a touch of home
And lighten tasks that seem in vain.
Men's faces are no longer strange
But seem as those he always knew
When some one brings the joyous change
With his: "I sat in Lodge with you."

So you, my brother, now and then
Have often put me in your debt
By showing forth to other men
That you your friends do not forget.
When all the world seems gray and cold
And I am weary, worn and blue,
Then comes this golden thought I hold —
You said: "I sat in Lodge with you."

When to the last great Lodge you fare
My prayer is that I may be
One of your friends who wait you there,
Intent on your smiling face to see.
We, with the warder at the gate,
Will have a pleasant task to do;
We'll call, though you come soon or late:
"Come in! We sat in Lodge with you!"



by Douglas Malloch

Fine men have walked this way before,
Whatever Lodge your Lodge may be;
Whoever stands before the door,
The sacred arch of Masonry,
Stands where the wise, the great, the good,
In their own time and place have stood.

You are not Brother just with these,
Your friends and neighbors; you are kin
With Masons down the centuries;
This room that now you enter in
Has felt the tread of many feet,
For here all Masonry you meet.

You walk the path the great have trod,
The great in heart, the great in mind,
Who looked through Masonry to God,
And looked through God to all mankind
Learned more than word or sign or grip,
Learned Man's and God's relationship.

To him who sees, who understands,
How mighty Masonry appears!
A Brotherhood of many lands,
A fellowship of many years,
A Brotherhood so great, so vast,
Of all the Craft of all the past.

And so I say a sacred trust
Is yours to share, is yours to keep;
I hear the voice of men of dust,
I hear the step of men asleep;
And down the endless future, too,
Your own shall echo after you.


Father's Lodge

by Douglas Malloch

Father's Lodge, I well remember,
wasn't large as Lodges go,
There was trouble in December
getting to it through the snow.
But he seldom missed a meeting;
drifts or blossoms in the lane,
Still the Tyler heard his greeting,
winter ice or summer rain.

Father's Lodge thought nothing of it:
'mid their labors and their cares
Those old Masons learned to love it,
that fraternity of theirs.
What's a bit of stormy weather,
when a little down the road,
Men are gathering together,
helping bear each other's load?

Father's Lodge had made a village:
men of father's sturdy brawn
Turned a wilderness to tillage,
seized the flag, and carried on,
Made a village, built a city,
shaped a country, formed a state,
Simple men, not wise nor witty —
humble men, and yet how great!

Father's Lodge had caught the gleaming
of the great Masonic past;
Thinking, toiling, daring, dreaming,
they were builders to the last.
Quiet men, not rich nor clever,
with the tools they found at hand
Building for the great forever,
first a village, then a land.

Father's Lodge no temple builded,
shaped of steel and carved of stone;
Marble columns, ceilings guilded,
father's Lodge has never known.
But a heritage of glory
they have left, the humble ones —
They have left their mighty story
in the keeping of their sons.


The Little Lodge Of Long Ago

by Douglas Malloch

The Little Lodge of long ago —
It wasn't very much for show;
Men met above the village store,
And cotton more than satin wore,
And sometimes stumbled on a word,
But no one cared, or no one heard.
Then tin reflectors threw the light
Of kerosene across the night
And down the highway served to call
The faithful to Masonic Hall.
It wasn't very much, I know,
The little Lodge of long ago.

But, men who meet in finer halls,
Forgive me if the mind recalls
With love, not laughter, doors of pine
And smoky lamps that dimly shine,
Regalia tarnished, garments frayed,
Or cheaply bought or simply made,
And floors uncarpeted, and men
Whose grammar falters now and then —
For Craft, or Creed, or God Himself,
Is not a book upon a shelf:
They have a splendor that will touch
A Lodge that isn't very much.

It isn't very much — and yet
This made it great: there Masons met.
And, if a handful or a host,
That always matters, matters most.
The beauty of the meeting hour
Is not a thing of robe or flow'r,
However beautiful they seem:
The greatest beauty is the gleam
Of sympathy in honest eyes.
A Lodge is not a thing of size,
It is a thing of Brotherhood,
And that alone can make it good.


Songs of the Brotherhood


Good Fellowship

by Wilbur D. Nesbit

Ho, brother, it's the handclasp
and the good word and the smile
That does the most and helps the most
to make the world worth while!
It's all of us together,
or it's only you and I —
A ringing song of friendship,
and the heart beats high;
A ringing song of friendship,
and a word or two of cheer!
Then all the world is gladder
and the bending sky is clear!

It's you and I together —
and we're brothers one and all
When even through good fellowship
we hear the subtle call,
Whenever in the ruck of things
we feel the helping hand
Or see the deeper glow that none
but we may understand —
Then all the world is good to us
and all is worth the while;
Ho, brother, it's the handclasp
and the good word and the smile!


We Are Two Brothers

by H.L. Haywood

Give me your hand;
You are rich; I am poor;
Your wealth is your power, and by it you tread
A wide open path; where for me is a door
That is locked; and before it are worry and dread.
We are sundered, are we,
As two men can be
But we are two brothers in Freemasonry
So give me your hand.

Give me your hand;
You are great; I'm unknown;
You travel with a permanent fame;
I go on a way unlauded, alone,
With hardly a man to hear of my name:
We are sundered, are we,
As two men can be
But we are two brothers in Freemasonry
So give me your hand.

Give me your hand;
You are old; I am young;
The years in your heart their wisdom have sown;
But knowledge speaks not by my faltering tongue,
And small in the wisdom I claim as my own:
We are sundered, are we,
As two men can be
But we are two brothers in Freemasonry
So give me your hand.


Are You A Man?

by W.R. Shields

I do not ask, my friend, if you
Were born a Gentile or a Jew,
A Buddhist, or Mohammedan:
I only ask, are you a man?

It matters not, my friend, to me
If you are black as black can be,
Or colored red, or brown, or tan:
I ask but this, are you a man?

I care not, brother, whence you came,
Nor do I seek to know your name,
Your race, religion, creed or clan:
I want to know if you're a man.

I care not if you're homely quite,
Or handsome as an angle bright,
If you, throughout your little span,
Have only shown yourself a man.

I think that most men think like that:
They hate a weakling, loathe a rat;
They've always liked, since time began,
One who is first and last a man.


He Is A Man — My Brother

by Henry Nehemiah Dodge

What man soe'er I chance to see —
Amazing thought — is kin to me,
And if a man, my brother.

What though in silken raiment fine
His form be clad, while naked mine;
He is a man, my brother.

What though with flashing chariot wheel
He spurn my cry, nor pity feel;
He is a man, my brother.

What though he sit in regal state
And for an empire legislate,
He is a man, my brother.

What though he grovel at my feet,
Spurned by the rabble of the street;
He is a man, my brother.

What though his hand with crime be red,
His heart a stone, his conscience dead;
He is a man, my brother.

And when we pass upon the street,
It is my brother that I meet;
Alas, alas, my brother!

Though low his life, and black his heart,
There is a nobler, deathless part
Within this man, my brother.

The soul which this frail clay enfolds
The image of his Maker holds —
That makes this man my brother.

Though dimly there that image shine,
It marks the soul a thing divine,
A child of God, my brother.

For him the spotless Son of God
The Perfect Man, our pathway trod,
To show Himself our Brother.

Nor walks the earth so vile a wretch
But down to him that love doth stretch,
As to an only brother.

Though deep the abyss with darkness lower,
'Tis but the measure of His power
Who thence will raise my brother.

A Savior to the uttermost,
He will not see His brother lost,
Nigh ruined, yet his brother.


The Good Word

by Wilbur D. Nesbit

Our brother — aye, he is our friend;
We do not hold the right to chide,
To flout and damn, world without end,
The foibles that the past should hide.
Deep hidden in his heart of hearts,
Or maybe shining forth alone
Is the good trait. Our censure smarts
And sears till it is overthrown —
Speak the good word!

Speak the good word - the word that gives
The newer impulse and the hope,
A word that helps, and grows, and lives
A Light to them that blindly grope
Through all the darkness of despair.
They know their faults, and know them well!
Of censurings they have their share —
The kind words are the ones that tell:
Speak the good word!

A good word is a helping hand,
A coin that's minted of fine gold;
To read the rote of faults we've banned
May loose the eager climber's hold.
Our life is short; we cannot do
All we would have it comprehend,
But this much, truly, I and you
May do each day for this our friend —
Speak the good word!


Songs of the Masonic Life


[This poem is elsewhere entitled "The Road."]


by Carl H. Claudy

So many men before thy Altars kneel
Unthinkingly, to promise brotherhood:
So few remain, humbly to kiss thy rood
With ears undeafened to thy mute appeal;
So many find thy symbols less than real
Their teachings mystic, hard to understand;
So few there are, in all thy far flung band
To hold thy banner high and draw thy steel.

And yet — immortal and most mighty, Thou!
What hath thy lore of life, to let it live?
What is the vital spark, hid in thy vow?
Thy millions learned, as thy dear paths they trod,
The secret of the strength thou hast to give;
"I am a way of common men to God."

Copyright by the Master Mason, October, 1924


When Are You A Mason?

by Wilbur D. Nesbit

When are you a Mason?
When you go to Lodge
If there is a meeting
That you cannot dodge?
When you wear your button?
When still up you climb?
The way to be a Mason
Is to be one all the time.

When are you a Mason?
When there's fun and feast,
Or when you can bolster
With a word at least
Some poor devil's spirits!
The real help you give.
The way to be a Mason
Is to be one as you live.

When are you a Mason?
When some gossip spreads
Of another brother,
Are you the one who heads
Off the hurtful babble,
And helps make things right?
The way to be a Mason
Is to be one day and night.

When are you a Mason?
Brother, you and I
Can make great the Order
As the days go by,
Through each word and action,
Through each song and smile:
The way to be a Mason
Is to be one all the while!


Always A Mason

by Douglas Malloch

Let no king quite put off his crown!
I still would have him kingly when
In some old inn the king sat down
To banquet with his serving-men.
I love a mild and merry priest,
Whom Brothers toast, and neighbors prod;
Yet would I have him, at the feast,
A little of the man of God.

So with a Mason: I would see
Him somewhat of a Mason still,
Though far from Lodge-rooms he may be,
In court, or counting-house, or mill.
Whatever garment he may doff,
What mark Masonic lay aside,
I would not have him quite put off
The Craft he lately glorified.

A soldier is a soldier, though
He lays the sword aside awhile.
The time, the place, I do not know
Man may not serve, or may not smile.
I know no moment anywhere,
Whatever place the place may be,
A Mason may not always wear
A little of his Masonry.


Be On Guard

by Wilbur D. Nesbit

Round the ancient Lodges,
Men were set on guard,
North and south and east and west,
Keeping watch and ward.
Silent, steady, sleepless,
Keen of ear and eye —
On the pathway where they stood
No one might creep by.

As the covenanters
In each hidden glen
Kept a watch and ward without,
Posted earnest men —
Not as shields of evil,
Be it understood:
But they knew to keep the faith
They must guard the good.

Near the ancient Lodges
None might come to see;
None might come to listen there
Save a sign gave he,
For the ancient Lodges,
As those of today,
Kept the outer, creeping folk
Very far away.

But, today, each Mason
Has a duty high:
He must stand a sentinel
To all that come nigh;
He must guard Freemasonry,
Must protect its name
As he would his gate or door
Or a woman's name.

How, then, shall we do this?
Word and deed must bear
Evidence of what is in
Compass, plumb and square!
So that they who watch us
In the daily crowd
Shall proclaim that Masonry
Is high, and clean, and proud!


Members Or Masons

by Douglas Malloch

Oh, his hair was a white as the snow that we tread,
With a little black cap on the back of his head,
And he trembled a bit, but I saw in his eyes
Both the gaze of a friend and the look of the wise.
Ere they opened the Lodge we just happened to chat:
"I'm not knocking," he said, "don't accuse me of that,
But I tell you, my son, if there's anything wrong
With the Craft any place, anywhere you belong,
In a Lodge that is lacking or lagging behind,
More members than Masons you always will find.

"When a fellow gets old, say a fellow like me,
He may think that the past is all right, I agree,
And the present all wrong; and yet, nevertheless,
We have seen more of men than you youngsters, I guess;
And, if in a Lodge, be it large, be it small,
There's a lack of that heart that's the heart of it all,
And a lack of the head that is bowed at the thought
Of the Craft that it is and the work it has wrought,
Then, I say, in that Lodge, lacking heart, lacking mind,
More members than Masons is what you will find.

"For it isn't enough that we mumble a word,
No, it isn't enough that our voice shall be heard,
But our acts must be seen — yes, in word and in act,
Be a Mason in name and a Mason in fact!
Sixty years I have walked in the face of the storm,
And it kept my head up and it kept my heart warm;
And the need of us now, like the need of us then,
Is not members but Masons, not members but Men!
Let us leaven the lump till at last you will find
All members, all Masons, in heart and in mind."


The Men Of Tyre

by Wilbur D. Nesbit

Aye, the men of Tyre come forth,
stout of heart and scant of rest,
From the south and from the north,
from the east and from the west;
And the girders and the beams
form a web against the sky,
While the nagging whistle screams
of the precious hours that fly.
Then the wood and stone and steel,
each in its appointed place,
Rise until the days reveal
marvel work of strength and grace.

Ho, the brawny men of Tyre!
They have builded firm and true
For your wage and for your hire,
as the men of Tyre must do.
And the unseen things they build,
do the loyal men of Tyre —
Shaping lives with fingers skilled,
bringing inspiration's fire;
Helping them that dimly grope,
leading them that falter on,
'Till upon the way of hope
they can see the blazing dawn —
And the works of brotherhood
stand as temples in the lands,
And we look, and call them good —
structures never built with hands.

Yes, the helpful men of Tyre,
weighing what they say and do,
For their labor ask no hire
save the thoughts of me and you.

Working while the hour glass runs
with the steady sands of time;
Laboring, the widow's sons
still pursue their task sublime.
As they built the temples then,
so they build the temple now —
Build it of the lives of men,
that they may the world endow
With the grace of better things,
with the joy of better deeds;
And each at his labor sings
while his pathway upward leads.

Aye, the earnest men of Tyre!
Great the heights that they have won;
Each shall have his heart's desire
when the tale of toil is done.


Songs of the Working Tools


The Gauge

by R.J. McLauchlin

The gauge divides the lives of men
Until their lifetimes' tales are o'er;
Receive the Gauge, Apprentice, then,
Consider well its hallowed lore!

A time for toil, a time for sleep,
A time to serve such men as need,
The Craftsman thus his faith shall keep,
As on the restless seasons speed.

For Work, whereby the peoples live,
Must needs command its portion fair;
And labor shall the Craftsman give
One-third his days, one-third his care.

And, weary when his tasks are done,
The Craftsman lays him down to rest,
That he may greet the morrow's sun
With fresher, slumber strengthened zest.

And work and rest himself shall raise
Unto a higher, richer state,
To turn anew toward God, His praise,
And succor the unfortunate.

A life well-lived is fashioned here,
A life with joy and profit fraught;
Its round, through each successive year,
Is by this simple emblem taught.


The Gavel

by R.J. McLauchlin

Within the quarry, I, the youngest Craftsman, stood,
And there were, all about me, mighty blocks
Rough-hewn from out the granite breast of Earth:

So young was I, so foolish and so fond
That, as I stood, I mused upon myself,
Beholding in my person perfect things,
And as I meditated there, I spoke:

Said I, "Observe in me the ages' heir,
Complete Fullfillment's type and Wisdom's son;
Let Future view my parts and there remark
Its sound salvation, its embodied hope,
For, as I stand, I am the very plinth,
Square-set, whereon its beauty may be built."

A cloud slid down, the moon's fair face was hid,
And, with the darkness, came a curious thing;
A voice, profound, reproving, kind withal,
Proceeded from the center of the stone
And, fearful, I attended it as it spoke;
The living boulder, grown articulate.

"Fond Youth," it told me, "we, thy comrades, speak
Such words as thine when first our shapes assume
Some likeness to the polished ashlars which
Compose the Temple's fair and perfect strength:
But ere our mass be of any use
Lo, we are changed till none that sees us now
Might know us then; and only that remains
Which ages' processes have given us;
Stones are we still, as ye are always men,
But stones prepared by toil and pain and sweat;
And thou, my foolish one, are like to us,
A mighty hulk of vast potential strength,
Potential wisdom, beauty, too, no doubt,
But none of these as yet, nor will be, till
Thou art prepared, like us, by toil and sweat;
Consider thou the Gavel, let it break
Thee to some fitting semblance of a man,
Else be thou silent, patient to remain
Within the quarry, with thy brother stones."

The cloud slid up, soft light caressed the scene
And all about were simple, mighty blocks
Rough-hewn from out the granite breast of Earth,
Great, futile, massy, purposeless and dumb,
And I was one of them.


The Plumb

by R.J. McLauchlin

Here walks one Crafsman mightily adown his earthly ways,
Another treads in humbler wise his round of nights and days,
And each completes his journey, and lo, each one has trod
Upright among his fellows and erect before his God.

And who shall say that one is great, the other nothing worth,
When each has stood uprightly in the councils of the earth?
And who shall say the Master will withhold his fullest grace
From one, however lowly, who erect has held his place?

Ah, patiently and slowly doth the age-long balance swing
To weigh the humble toiler and the ermine-vestured king,
And peradventure, finally, the toiler shall attain,
Beyond his mighty brother, to a rarer, loftier plane.

Behold the Plumb, my brothers, and regard its lesson well,
The lore of life and life's rewards its perfect line can tell,
To stand as straight, to work as true, to live as perfectly,
Is man's first pain, his fullest gain, his fairest destiny.

So he who seeks admonishment, as straight the Plumbine falls,
May scale no heights, speak paltry words, storm no embattled walls,
Yet to the Master's precincts, when his lifetime's toils are through,
Forever shall his footsteps lead, in steadfast course and true.


The Level

by R.J. McLauchlin

Oh, he who rides th' untrammeled winds of fame,
And he whose steps are painful made and slow,
Shall reach at length one goal; yea, each the same;
For on Time's Level do their courses go.

And man, composed of fragile mortal stuff,
His fame must doff, his glory leave behind,
Nor pride nor power has potency enough
To raise one mortal man above his kind.

The ages' wisdom gives this message birth,
The sweep of generations can display
The bones of Cζsar, mightiest of earth,
Beside his vassals, crumbling in the clay.

And thus the Craftsmen anciently were taught
That glory, on Time's Level, finds defeat,
And there have they their full communion sought,
And there they evermore shall work and meet.

The mighty and the lowly there shall bend
Unto the nearest tasks their lives provide;
The humble shall arise, the high descend,
As brothers, on the Level, side by side.


The Square

by R.J. McLauchlin

The Elders of our ancient art
Built Temples, high and fair,
And never stone was laid in place
And never column rose in grace,
Untested by the Square.

Our Elders left a heritage,
Upreared in wood and stone,
That we, who follow, might behold
The craft of these, the men of old,
Thus, through their works, made known.

Oh, let us do our work as well,
Though never dome we raise,
With brain untutored, hand unskilled,
A square-set Temple we may build,
Of simple nights and days.

The Square of Virtue for our acts
Wherewith to set them true,
Can make a building, standing quite
As worthy in our children's sight,
And in the Master's, too.

Thus may we, too, great builders be
As any ancient race;
Our Temple is the square-set mind,
Wherein the Master's Self may find
A fitting dwelling-place.


Songs of the Seasons


April In The Blue Lodge

by Wilbur D. Nesbit

The world is in the Blue Lodge
These waking April days;
The azure sky is bending
Above the blossomed ways.
The winter, tough and rugged,
Has all been swept away —
The world is in the Blue Lodge
With every April day.

'Tis more than any poem,
That ever yet was penned —
This lesson brought with April
To you and me, my friend.
Spring waxes into summer
And autumn comes again,
But there are other Aprils
With sunniness and rain.

We see the meadows wither,
we see the flowers fade,
We see the snow come drifting
Above the hill and glade;
And yet we know that April
Will bring the bees and birds,
As truly as a promise
Set down in age-old words.

The world is in the Blue Lodge,
The rounding sky its dome;
The orchards in the breezes
Now toss their blossom-foam.
The Master of good workmen
Bids all the earth to say
The world is in the Blue Lodge
With every April day.


The Masonry Of Spring

by Douglas Malloch

Men say, "How wonderful is Spring!"
I say, "How marvelous is man!"
For Spring no more can gladness bring
To earth than men to mortals can.
The Springtime sun is very good,
But, oh, the smile of brotherhood!
And green the grass upon the slope,
But lovelier some word of hope.

There is a Masonry of earth,
Of sun and blossom, seed and rain;
The only Masonry of worth
Is one that brings the Spring again,
Brings strength to brothers sore beset,
And faith to brothers who forget;
Like sun to blossom, rain to seed,
Are men who come to men in need.

A great fraternity is ours
Who really see and understand,
A brotherhood of hearts and flow'rs
And smiling sun and stretching hand.
We, too, may bloom in our own way,
Make glad some other mortal's day,
As much as any birds that sing
In God's great Masonry of Spring!


God's Freemasonry

by H.L. Haywood

Here in a lodge of pines I sit;
The canopy thrown over it
Is heaven's own very blue;
Due east and west its precincts lie
And always the all-seeing eye
Of summer's sun is shining through.

Its portals open to the west;
The chipmunk, gray and sober dressed,
The tyler is: You see him dodge
To challenge every new alarm:
He has no sword upon his arm
But well he guards this secret lodge.

Our master is that giant pine
Who bends o'er us with mien divine
To keep the lodge in order trim:
His wardens are two grey-beard birch
Who sit like elders in a church
Or make decorous bows to him.

The deacons are two slender trees,
Who move about whene'er the breeze
Brings orders from the Master's seat;
Our organist? Where thickest glooms
Are darkening in the pine top's plumes
The brother winds our music beat.

Whoever knocks upon the door
To learn the ancient wildwood lore,
That one he is our candidate:
We strip him of his city gear,
And meet him on the level here,
Then to our ways initiate.

We slip the hoodwink from his eye
And bid him look on earth and sky
To read the heiroglyphics there;
More ancient these than Golden Fleece
Or Roman Eagle, Tyre, or Greece,
Or Egypt old beyond compare.

On grass and stone and flower and sod
Is written down by hand of God
The secrets of this Masonry;
Who has the hood wink from his eyes
May in these common things surprise
The awful signs of Deity.

Here bird and plant and man and beast
Are seeking their Eternal East:
And here in springtime may be heard,
By him who doth such teachings seek
With praying heart, and wise, and meek,
The thundering of the old Lost Word.

All things that in creation are
From smallest fly to largest star,
In this fellowship may be
For all that floweth out from Him,
From dust to man and seraphim
Belong to God's freemasonry.


Make Me Mellow

by Douglas Malloch

Some would have Spring within the heart,
But I, some mellow month in mine
Like old October! Flowers depart,
And even youth must youth resign —
But always, brothers, there are some
To whom no Winters ever come:
Always October skies are theirs,
Even amid life's wintry cares.

And I would have my soul the same:
I cannot keep the look of youth,
But how October maples flame —
Age takes our beauty, gives us truth,
Age takes our wit, and makes us wise,
Age gives us life's October skies
And old October's mellower days,
A better time a thousand ways.

God make me mellow! Make me not
Sudden as Summer, brief as Spring.
I would not blow too cold, too hot,
I would keep kind through ev'rything.
I may give others less than flow'rs
Of flattery, but in their hours
Of grief, of trouble and of need
May I bring rather fruits to feed.


A Day Of Thanksgiving

by Wilbur D. Nesbit

We are traveling East, my Brother,
Whenever in gratefulness
We think of the things
that every day brings
Our lives and our homes to bless.
We are finding the path, my Brother,
Though frugal may be our feast,
If the good that we knew
is the good that we do —
Ah, then we are traveling East.

We are learning the Work, my Brother,
Whenever, with kindly aim
We lighten the care
and our plenty we share
With the poor and the halt and lame.
We are speaking the Word, my Brother,
And finding our joys increased,
When we can bring cheer
to replace a child's tear —
Ah, then we are traveling East.

We are bringing the Light, my Brother,
Whenever we greet a friend,
Whenever we lift
a poor soul gone adrift,
Or one in distress defend.
We are marking the Way, my Brother,
When through us has sorrow ceased,
When something we've said
to a lone heart has sped —
Ah, then we are traveling East.

We are traveling East, my Brother,
Whenever in thankful mood
We pause for a day
to think and to pray,
To set forth our gratitude.
The Word, the Work, my Brother,
Through ages have never ceased —
The Word that is true,
the Work we can do,
Ah, then we are traveling East.


A Mason's Birthday

by Wilbur D. Nesbit

Today you turn another page
In Life's long book of verse and prose,
And added to your craftsman's wage
This wish of mine with friendship glows.
One day you'll reach the easy slope
Which idles down the twilight hill —
Strong with the Promise and the Hope
May your days all be gladder still.

Time turns his hourglass once again;
The sands in an unceasing stream
Fall just as swiftly now, as when
Youth's sunshine held them with its gleam.
Life has its seasons, as the year
Turns softly on from day to day;
Ere we may sense it, change is here;
No hour may, save in memory, stay.

Life is at noon — yet well we know
That we may live the hours agone,
That even shades of dusk may show
The glints of every olden dawn.
And you, whose birthday is a time
For us to think of all we've had
From you — we send to you this rhyme
To wish you all that's good and glad.

Today you turn another page
In life's long book of verse and prose
And added to your craftsman's wage
This wish from all your brethren goes:
That joy shine with the sun by day
And peace glow with the stars at night,
And that forever on your way
You fare beneath the one great Light.



by Douglas Malloch

We'll twine some holly on the chandelier,
We'll hang a "Merry Christmas!" on the wall;
Remember, brothers, Christmas time is near,
Go get some tissue, decorate the hall.
But, oh, my brothers, let that not be all! —
Twine something more than holly-berries here,
Yes, Christ as well as Christmas time recall
In all our cheer.

Twine something more than holly, — twine an arm
Around an erring brother, 'round the weak.
Not all the berries from the field or farm
So well of Christ and Christmas time will speak.
Fare forth beyond the Lodge-room — let us seek
Some sadness out, and with the magic charm
Of Christmas drive the tear-drop from the cheek,
From hearts alarm.

Around the world the songs of Christmas roll.
O Christ, men feel Your hand within their own.
What, after all, the great Masonic goal,
Of all the brotherhoods that earth has known?
Not only wealth, not only walls of stone,
But lives made glad, and human hearts made whole,
Men hand-in-hand, and Christ upon His throne,
His throne the Soul.


The Christmas Lodge

by Wilbur D. Nesbit

"God rest you, merry gentlemen" — The tyler at the door
Is that blythe friend called Welcome, whom we knew in days of yore
The senior and the junior are Good Nature and Good Heart;
The brothers are all of the joys in which we've had a part;
We sing the olden carols and we keep the olden feast —
The Christmas Lodge is opened, and Good Cheer sits in the East.

The altar glows with beauty, and we mark how proud it lifts
Its wreath of glossy holly and its plentitude of gifts;
The candle flame is golden as it was on one great night
When in the sky a wonderous star gave all the world its light —
Now has the strife and struggle, the petty envy ceased;
The Christmas Lodge is opened, and Good Cheer sits in the East.

Good Cheer ruled in the tidings the laughing angels sang
What time their first great carol across the ages rang,
And with it came the magic as perfect now as then —
The touch that makes us happier with hearts made young again;
Upon one joyous level now, meet all, the great and least —
The Christmas Lodge is opened, and Good Cheer sits in the East.

"God rest you, merry gentlemen" — it comes, a carol clear;
The grip holds newer warmth now, as the pulsing word we hear,
We find an end for sorrow and we bring a balm for pain,
We hear the children's laughter lilting through the old refrain.
We sing the olden carols and we keep the olden feast —
The Christmas Lodge is opened, and Good Cheer sits in the East.


Songs of the Builders


My Temple

by George H. Free

"Build me a temple," the Master said,
"Fashion each block with care;
Stones for my house I have placed at hand,
More will be furnished at your demand,
See that you build it as I have planned —
Build it surpassing fair."

Tools for my task He has given me —
Tools for my every need;
Gavel and trowel and plumb and square,
Level and gauge, and equipment rare,
Implements perfect beyond compare,
Meet for my work, indeed.

Plans He has drawn on my trestleboard —
Worthy designs and plain;
Foundation firm, based on faith secure,
Sanctum sanctorum, a heart kept pure,
Dome, seat of reason, a fortress sure —
Plans for a noble fane.

How am I doing my Master's work —
What of my zeal and skill?
How will my shrine with His plans compare?
Will it prove true by His perfect square —
Fitting abode for His presence fair —
How do I work God's will?


The Hundred Years

Written for the 100th Anniversary of the Grand Lodge of Michigan

by Wilbur D. Nesbit

"Consider the years of many generations"

— Deuteronomy 32:17

So little space, this century of time —
A breath, a moment, in the tale of things;
Yet in it have we builded more sublime,
More lasting, than the palaces of kings.
How have we wrought this mighty hundred years?
We caught the plumb line, level, and the square
From hands of those whose faith outweighed their fears
And gave them strength which we in turn might share.

And now the Temple of Today is fair;
Tall pillars rise in beauty, and we see
High arches that have leaped out through the air
To meet each other in all symmetry.
And yet not finished. No, not though
Like to a thing complete it proudly stands.
A finished structure we shall never know
Until we see the house not made with hands.

We have but paid in part the ancient debt
We owe to all the valiant brotherhood
Whose toil, whose dreams, whose striving and whose sweat
Earned for our lives a heritage of good.
And in this year we look far down the way,
On which betimes we faltered and we fell,
And hail the splendid men of yesterday
To cry: The task goes onward; all is well!

We lift our hands, but not to celebrate
The triumphs we have won, the trials past —
We lift our hands, anew to dedicate
Our hearts and souls, as men who pray and fast.
Our hundred years! Oh, men of days agone
Who gave us Masonry without a stain,
We vow, and face the years held in the dawn,
Our lives, as yours, shall not be lived in vain!


The Road Of Masonry

by Douglas Malloch

Men build a road of Masonry
Across the hills and dales,
Unite the prairie and the sea,
The mountains and the vales,
They cross the chasm, bridge the stream,
They point to where the turrets gleam,
And many men for many a day
Who seek the heights shall find the way.

Men build a road of Masonry,
But not for self they build:
With footsteps of humanity
The hearts of men are thrilled.
This music makes their labor sweet:
The endless tramp of other feet,
The thought that men shall travel thus
An easier road because of us.

We build the road of Masonry
With other men in mind;
We do not build for you and me,
We build for all mankind.
We build a road! — remember, men,
Build not for Now, but build for Then,
And other men who walk the way
Shall find the road we build today.

Who builds the road of Masonry,
Though small or great his part,
However hard the task may be,
May toil with singing heart.
For it is something, after all,
When muscles tire and shadows fall,
To know that other men shall bless
The builder for his faithfulness.


The Cornerstone

by R.J. McLauchlin

The symbol of a stalwart faith thou art,
Firm set and sure, for ages there to stand,
At once the token of a cunning hand,
And of the consecrated, faithful heart;
To those who follow us shalt thou impart
Some knowledge of the tasks this day fulfilled,
And of the men that wrought it, wise and skilled,
Their mem'ry shall thy presence ever start;

O stone, thou art an altar, on thee rears
A Temple, standing wondrous in the sun;
A Lesson unto all the coming years
Of faithfulness to work, today begun;
And on thee, raised in glory, there appears
All Wisdom, Strength and Beauty, joined in one.


The Laying Of The Cornerstone

by R.J. McLauchlin

We have laid the stone all truly with a Master Craftsman's care,
We have tested it and tried it by the level, plumb and square,
We have made a firm foundation for our children's children's toil
And empty poured the vessels of their corn and wine and oil.

What further is remaining save stone on stone to rear
That soon the finished building in its glory shall appear?
What more to do than giving to this pile its latest touch?
And a Voice that stirs the stillness makes this answer, "There is much."

"There is work to do, my brothers, wrought of neither stone nor steel
And never dome nor tower can its majesty reveal,
For this, the nobler labor, ere his toil can make it whole,
Must be performed in darkness in the Master Craftsman's soul.

"There are works of loving-kindness and of charity and good
And a structure to be builded with the stones of brotherhood,
For this mighty Temple's fabric is an empty, mocking shell
Unless within it there be built a shrine of souls as well."

Take heed, then, Master Craftsman, when this Temple shall arise
With its brave and gleaming towers pointing grandly to the skies,
Let yourselves compose the structure, let yourselves the Temple be,
That shall stand in great proportions unto all Eternity.


Corn, Wine And Oil

by Wilbur D. Nesbit

"And with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again."

— Matthew 7:2

Or good or bad the word or deed,
Or well or ill your chosen toil —
For all of it you have your meed,
Far more than corn and wine and oil.

It shall be rendered, soon or late;
The warder of our final wage
We shall find standing at the gate,
His finger on the balanced page.
Some day, along the path of years,
Full suddenly we shall be paid
In coin of laughter or of tears
Such as our words or deeds have made.

Strange coin this warder gives to us;
The whitened hair, the palsied hand,
The lips that murmur, tremulous,
The words that none can understand —
Or, he may give us from his store
The golden glow that thrills the soul
For some kind action long before:
'Tis thus the warder pays the toll.

Aye, coin he gives that is unseen,
That on its fellows does not ring;
Gives to the courtly and the mean,
Gives to the peasant and the king;
Such coin as must forever touch
The inner consciousness of men —
The warder pays us just so much,
But pays, and pays, and pays again.

Or good or bad the deed or thought,
Or well or ill our chosen toil,
The wage for all that we have wrought
Is more than corn, or wine or oil.



by Douglas Malloch

Brick by brick the Masons builded
Till the highest cross was gilded
With the glory of the sun,
Till the noble task was done.
Step by step and one by one
Wall and rafter, roof and spire
Men were lifting ever higher,
Not in some mysterious way —
With the tasks of every day.

Architects may do their dreaming,
See their visioned turrets gleaming
High above them in the skies;
Yet the wisdom of the wise
Cannot make one roof arise —
Hearts must sing and hands must labor,
Man must work beside his neighbor,
Brick on brick and toil on toil
Building upward from the soil.

So we build a lodge or nation,
On the firmly fixed foundation
Of a flag or craft or creed;
But on top of that we need
Many a noble thought and deed,
Day by day and all the seven,
Building slowly up to heaven,
Till our lives the lives shall seem
Of the Master Builder's dream.


In Time Of Dedication

by Wilbur D. Nesbit

"And King Solomon sent and fetched Hiram out of Tyre. He was a widow's son of the tribe of Naphtali ... And he set up the pillars in the porch of the temple: and he set up the right pillar, and called the name thereof Jachin: and he set up the left pillar, and called the name thereof Boaz."

— The First Book of Kings.

Now Solomon built him a temple fair,
in praise of the Lord his God,
Built with the plumb and level,
and the compass and meting rod;
And Hiram brought him his handy men
to labor in brass and wood,
And Solomon looked on their craftsmanship
and vowed that it all was good.

Pillars they set in the porchway there,
two pillars of stately grace;
Jachin and Boaz named he them,
and set them within the place;
Chapiters wrought with cunning hands,
checkering net and wreath,
With wonderful carven pomegranates,
and bases to rest beneath.

And Solomon stood at the altar then,
and lifted his hands to pray;
"Lord, let Thine eyes be toward this house,
be toward it night and day —
Be with us as Thou wert of ancient times
to all our fathers known;
May all of our thoughts and words and deeds
do honor to Thee alone!"

So Solomon built him a temple then —
and deep in the dust of years
Are scattered the pillars and brazen work,
but he who is faithful hears
The word that the Lord spake to Solomon,
the promise He gave him then:
"I have hallowed the house which thy men have built
to gladden the eyes of men."

Today let us pray as Solomon prayed,
that our temple may stand alway:
"Lord, let Thine eyes be toward our house,
be toward it night and day,
For it is far more than the work of our hands,
though solid and vast it seems —
For part of it is our hope and faith,
and part of it is our dreams.

"And part of it is our trust in Thee,
and fairest of all this house
Is what we have held in our heart of hearts
when voicing our sacred vows.
The temple men see is all rich and strong,
and beautiful as it stands,
But over and in and through it,
is the temple not built with hands.

"So here do we pledge the grace of all
our minds and our souls have wrought,
As Hiram inspired all his handy men
with knowledge that he was taught.
The work of our hands and the work of our lives
we pledge unto Thee, and then
We trust in the strength of the pillars twain,
forever, and aye. Amen."


The Death Of The Master

by H.L. Haywood

A crime made red the gates! Then turmoil broke
Across the men who wrought with plumb and square;
They huddled round the Pillars, Porch and Stair
And cried with anguished breath, "Our strength is smoke
Now he is gone; for who can now invoke
The guiding light of Wisdom's Secret Word!" Despair
Benumed the hands that sought to labor there
And dust hung round the Temple like a cloak.

And I, these ages after, feel the guilt!
For I it was who slew within my heart
By ruffians Sloth and Greed, the Master's Word!
Where stands the Temple now? In dust and silt
Its secret buried lies, and all its art
Looks mocking at me from my Trestle Board.

Alphabetical Index by Title

16 Always A MasonDouglas Malloch
28 April In The Blue LodgeWilbur D. Nesbit
11 Are You A Man?W.R. Shields
17 Be On GuardWilbur D. Nesbit
44 BuildingDouglas Malloch
35 ChristmasDouglas Malloch
36The Christmas LodgeWilbur D. Nesbit
43 Corn, Wine And OilWilbur D. Nesbit
42The CornerstoneR.J. McLauchlin
32A Day Of ThanksgivingWilbur D. Nesbit
48The Death Of The MasterH.L. Haywood
5 EchoesDouglas Malloch
6 Father's LodgeDouglas Malloch
22The GaugeR.J. McLauchlin
23The GavelR.J. McLauchlin
30 God's FreemasonryH.L. Haywood
9 Good FellowshipWilbur D. Nesbit
13The Good WordWilbur D. Nesbit
12 He Is A Man — My BrotherHenry Nehemiah Dodge
39The Hundred YearsWilbur D. Nesbit
3 I Sat In Lodge With YouWilbur D. Nesbit
45 In Time Of DedicationWilbur D. Nesbit
41The Laying Of The CornerstoneR.J. McLauchlin
26The LevelR.J. McLauchlin
7The Little Lodge Of Long AgoDouglas Malloch
32 Make Me MellowDouglas Malloch
29The Masonry Of SpringDouglas Malloch
34A Mason's BirthdayWilbur D. Nesbit
19 Members Or MasonsDouglas Malloch
20The Men Of TyreWilbur D. Nesbit
38 My TempleGeorge H. Free
24The PlumbR.J. McLauchlin
40The Road Of MasonryDouglas Malloch
15 SonnetCarl H. Claudy
27The SquareR.J. McLauchlin
3 Warmth And WelcomeH.L. Haywood
10 We Are Two BrothersH.L. Haywood
15 When Are You A Mason?Wilbur D. Nesbit

Index by Author

Carl H. Claudy Sonnet
Henry Nehemiah Dodge He Is A Man — My Brother
George H. Free My Temple
H.L. Haywood (4)The Death Of The Master
God's Freemasonry
Warmth And Welcome
We Are Two Brothers
Douglas Malloch (10) Always A Mason
Father's Lodge
The Little Lodge Of Long Ago
Make Me Mellow
The Masonry Of Spring
Members Or Masons
The Road Of Masonry
R.J. McLauchlin (7)The Cornerstone
The Gauge
The Gavel
The Laying Of The Cornerstone
The Level
The Plumb
The Square
Wilbur D. Nesbit (13) April In The Blue Lodge
Be On Guard
The Christmas Lodge
Corn, Wine And Oil
A Day Of Thanksgiving
Good Fellowship
The Good Word
The Hundred Years
I Sat In Lodge With You
In Time Of Dedication
A Mason's Birthday
The Men Of Tyre
When Are You A Mason?
W.R. Shields Are You A Man?

Index by First Line

First LineAuthor
A crime made red the gates! Then turmoil brokeHaywood
Across the crowd-thronged city waysHaywood
Aye, the men of Tyre come forth,Nesbit
Brick by brick the Masons buildedMalloch
"Build me a temple," the Master said,Free
Father's Lodge, I well remember,Malloch
Fine men have walked this way before,Malloch
Give me your hand; You are rich; I am poor;Haywood
"God rest you, merry gentlemen" — The tyler at the doorNesbit
Here in a lodge of pines I sit;Haywood
Here walks one Crafsman mightily adown his earthly ways,McLauchlin
Ho, brother, it's the handclaspNesbit
I do not ask, my friend, if youShields
Let no king quite put off his crown!Malloch
Men build a road of MasonryMalloch
Men say, "How wonderful is Spring!"Malloch
Now Solomon built him a temple fair,Nesbit
Oh, he who rides th' untrammeled winds of fame,McLauchlin
Oh, his hair was a white as the snow that we tread,Malloch
Or good or bad the word or deed,Nesbit
Our brother — aye, he is our friend;Nesbit
Round the ancient Lodges,Nesbit
So little space, this century of timeNesbit
So many men before thy Altars kneelClaudy
Some would have Spring within the heart,Malloch
The Elders of our ancient artMcLauchlin
The gauge divides the lives of menMcLauchlin
The little Lodge of long agoMalloch
The symbol of a stalwart faith thou art,McLauchlin
The world is in the Blue LodgeNesbit
There is a saying filled with cheer,Nesbit
Today you turn another pageNesbit
We are traveling East, my Brother,Nesbit
We have laid the stone all truly with a Master Craftsman's care,McLauchlin
We'll twine some holly on the chandelier,Malloch
What man soe'er I chance to seeDodge
When are you a Mason? When you go to LodgeNesbit
Within the quarry, I, the youngest Craftsman, stood,McLauchlin

Review from The Builder, Nov.1927:

THE DOLLAR MASONIC LIBRARY. Published jointly by the Commission on Masonic Education of Michigan and the Bureau of Social and Educational Service, New York. Ten volumes, paper. Price, $1.10.

THERE is no doubt that in recent years a great change of heart has come over those who officially guide and control the destinies of the Craft in the United States, at least in respect to "Masonic Education." The original attitude, many years ago, of officers of lodges and Grand Lodges towards the Masonic press and Masonic literature was suspicion and distrust. This was followed by indifference and neglect, amounting in many cases, apparently, to absolute ignorance that such a thing as a Masonic book or a Masonic magazine existed or could exist. Now the pendulum has swung right over and there is hardly a Grand Lodge in the country which has not its Committee on the subject, and scarcely a Committee that is not publishing pamphlets, courses and suggestions for the improvement of Masons in Masonry and encouragements and inducements to get the habit of reading about it. This is all very much to the good. There is not yet very much fruit to show, but there is no reason for impatience - the seed must germinate, then will follow the shoot, in due time the bud and the blossom, there being no frosts or droughts or other mischances in the meantime.

The present collection is really a quite ambitious effort. In these days of high cost, printing is not done for nothing, and from the lowest point of view the set is a good dollar's worth.


The second volume is a collection of Masonic verse, Songs of the Craft, by Bros. Nesbit, Malloch and others. Masonic "poetry" is a delicate subject. On the whole it is exceedingly bad, and much of it is not even verse let alone poetry in any but a courtesy sense of the words. This selection, perhaps because it is no more than forty-eight pages, is on a remarkably high level.

••• (Full review in this page's source code.)

Those responsible for this collection are to be congratulated on their work, and we are sure that no one who gets a set will ever regret the dollar he spent in doing so.