The Vision of Judgment

I

Saint Peter sat by the celestial gate:
His keys were rusty, and the lock was dull,
So little trouble had been given of late;
Not that the place by any means was full,
But since the Gallic era 'eight-eight'
The devils had ta'en a longer, stronger pull,
And 'a pull altogether,' as they say
At sea — which drew most souls another way.

II

The angels all were singing out of tune,
And hoarse with having little else to do,
Excepting to wind up the sun and moon,


Veterans' Cemetery

The ceremonies of the day have ceased,
Abandoned to the ragged crow's parade.
The flags unravel in the caterpillar's feast.
The wreaths collapse onto the stones they shade.

How quietly doves gather by the gate
Like souls who have no heaven and no hell.
The patient grass reclaims its lost estate
Where one stone angel stands as sentinel.

The voices whispering in the burning leaves,
Faint and inhuman, what can they desire
When every season feeds upon the past,
And summer's green ignites the autumn's fire?


Verses on Sir Joshua Reynold's Painted Window at New College, Oxford

Ah, stay thy treacherous hand, forbear to trace
Those faultless forms of elegance and grace!
Ah, cease to spread the bright transparent mass,
With Titian's pencil, o'er the speaking glass!
Nor steal, by strokes of art with truth combin'd,
The fond illusions of my wayward mind!
For long, enamour'd of a barbarous age,
A faithless truant to the classic page;
Long have I lov'd to catch the simple chime
Of minstrel-harps, and spell the fabling rime;
To view the festive rites, the knightly play,


Uriel

IT fell in the ancient periods
Which the brooding soul surveys,
Or ever the wild Time coin'd itself
Into calendar months and days.

This was the lapse of Uriel,
Which in Paradise befell.
Once, among the Pleiads walking,
Sayd overheard the young gods talking;
And the treason, too long pent,
To his ears was evident.
The young deities discuss'd
Laws of form, and metre just,
Orb, quintessence, and sunbeams,
What subsisteth, and what seems.
One, with low tones that decide,


Uriel

IT fell in the ancient periods
   Which the brooding soul surveys,
Or ever the wild Time coin'd itself
   Into calendar months and days.

This was the lapse of Uriel,
Which in Paradise befell.
Once, among the Pleiads walking,
Sayd overheard the young gods talking;
And the treason, too long pent,
To his ears was evident.
The young deities discuss'd
Laws of form, and metre just,
Orb, quintessence, and sunbeams,
What subsisteth, and what seems.
One, with low tones that decide,


Until The Night

Over the ocean of life’s commotion
We sail till the night comes on.
Sail and sail in a tiny boat,
Drifting wherever the billows go.
Out on the treacherous sea afloat,
Beat by the cruel winds that blow,
Hither and thither our boat is drawn,
Till the day dies out and the night comes on.

Over a meadow of light and shadow
We wander with weary feet,
Seeking a bauble men call “Fame, ”
Grasping the dead-sea fruit named “wealth, ”
Finding each but an empty name,


Untitled 4

Mother! Darling mother, you are seeking me I know,
And I feel thy love will follow through the world where'er I go;
But I cannot come, dear mother; I am sadly altered now:
The once fair wreath of innocence that garlanded my brow
Has faded ne'er to bloom again; and from the things of yore-
The fair, the good, the beautiful - I'm severed ever-more.
My onward way must be a path of darkness and of pain,
But I must tread it all alone - I cannot come again.

Of all the changes that have come, I know that this will be,


Unfortunate

I

Fold her hands upon her breast,
And let her sweetly sleep.
She has found a perfect rest,
Beneath her winding sheet.
II
Her weary limbs are now at rest,
And free from toil and pain;
Her weary soul from earth has left,
But in Heaven lives again.
III
Death has closed her mild blue eyes,
That once was full of mirth,
Her lovely form once full of life,
Will now return to earth.
IV
Touch her gently, let her lie,
This forsaken girl forlorn;
Tears may fall from strangers' eyes,


Under Siege

Here on the slopes of hills, facing the dusk and the cannon of time
Close to the gardens of broken shadows,
We do what prisoners do,
And what the jobless do:
We cultivate hope.

***
A country preparing for dawn. We grow less intelligent
For we closely watch the hour of victory:
No night in our night lit up by the shelling
Our enemies are watchful and light the light for us
In the darkness of cellars.

***
Here there is no "I".
Here Adam remembers the dust of his clay.

***


Tuesday In Whitsun-Week

"Lord, in Thy field I work all day,
I read, I teach, I warn, I pray,
And yet these wilful wandering sheep
Within Thy fold I cannot keep.

"I journey, yet no step is won -
Alas! the weary course I run!
Like sailors shipwrecked in their dreams,
All powerless and benighted seems."

What? wearied out with half a life?
Scared with this smooth unbloody strife?
Think where thy coward hopes had flown
Had Heaven held out the martyr's crown.

How couldst thou hang upon the cross,


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