Is it for naught that where the tired crowds see
Only a place for trade, a teeming square,
Doors of high portent open unto me
Carved with great eagles and with hawthorns rare?
Vachel Lindsay was writing about his home town. For him, Springfield was more than the prosy, prosperous seat of Illinois' State Fair; he saw it as a cultural capital of the future, where art would some day vie with corn, hogs and cattle for attention. The hopeful poet, who died in 1931, might well have been pleased by this year's state fair. Last...