When I am in California I am not in the West.
It is West of the West. It is just California.
—Theodore Roosevelt

'Twixt the seas and the deserts,
    'Twixt the wastes and the waves,
Between the sands of buried lands
    And ocean's coral caves;
It lies not East nor West,
    But like a scroll unfurled,
Where the hand of God hath flung it
    Down the middle of the world.

It lies where God hath spread it
    In the gladness of His eyes,
Like a flame of jeweled tapestry
    Beneath His shining skies;
With the green of woven meadows,
    The hills in golden chains,
The light of leaping rivers,
    And the flash of poppied plains.

Days rise that gleam in glory,
    Days die with sunset's breeze,
While from Cathay that was of old
    Sail countless argosies;
Morns break again in splendor
    O'er the giant, new-born West,
But of all the lands God fashioned,
    'Tis this land is the best.

Sun and dews that kiss it,
    Balmy winds that blow,
The stars in clustered diadems
    Upon its peaks of snow;
The mighty mountains o'er it,
    Below, the white seas swirled—
Just California, stretching down
    The middle of the world.