Widow McFarlane

I was the Widow McFarlane,
Weaver of carpets for all the village.
And I pity you still at the loom of life,
You who are singing to the shuttle
And lovingly watching the work of your hands,
If you reach the day of hate, of terrible truth.
For the cloth of life is woven, you know,
To a pattern hidden under the loom --
A pattern you never see!
And you weave high-hearted, singing, singing,
You guard the threads of love and friendship
For noble figures in gold and purple.
And long after other eyes can see


When you go Away

When you go away, my friend,
When you say your last good-bye,
Then the summer time will end,
And the winter will be nigh.

Though the green grass decks the heather,
And the birds sing all the day,
There will be no summer weather
After you have gone away.

When I look into your eyes,
I shall thrill with deepest pain,
Thinking that beneath the skies
I may never look again.

You will feel a moment's sorrow,
I shall feel a lasting grief;
You forgetting on the morrow,


Where She Told Her Love

I saw her crop a rose
Right early in the day,
And I went to kiss the place
Where she broke the rose away
And I saw the patten rings
Where she o'er the stile had gone,
And I love all other things
Her bright eyes look upon.
If she looks upon the hedge or up the leafing tree,
The whitethorn or the brown oak are made dearer things to me.

I have a pleasant hill
Which I sit upon for hours,
Where she cropt some sprigs of thyme
And other little flowers;
And she muttered as she did it


Wild Orphan

Blandly mother
takes him strolling
by railroad and by river
-he's the son of the absconded
hot rod angel-
and he imagines cars
and rides them in his dreams,

so lonely growing up among
the imaginary automobiles
and dead souls of Tarrytown

to create
out of his own imagination
the beauty of his wild
forebears-a mythology
he cannot inherit.

Will he later hallucinate
his gods? Waking
among mysteries with
an insane gleam
of recollection?


Wild Deer

Where are you O Wild Deer?
I have known you for a while, here.

Both loners, both lost, both forsaken
The wild beast, for ambush, have all waken

Let us inquire of each other's state
If we can, each other's wishes consummate

I can see this chaotic field
Joy and peace sometimes won't yield

O friends, tell me who braves the danger
To befriend the forsaken, behold the stranger

Unless blessed Elias may come one day
And with his good office open the way

It is time to cultivate love


Why did I laugh tonight No voice will tell

Why did I laugh tonight? No voice will tell
No God, no demon of severe response
Deigns to reply from heaven or from hell
Then to my human heart I turn at once:
Heart, thou and I are here, sad and alone,
Say, why did I laugh? O mortal pain!
O darkness! darkness! Forever must I moan
To question heaven and hell and heart in vain?
Why did I laugh? I know this being's lease
My fancy to it's utmost blisses spreads
Yet would I on this very midnight cease
And all the world's gaudy ensigns see in shreds


Who Understands Me But Me

They turn the water off, so I live without water,
they build walls higher, so I live without treetops,
they paint the windows black, so I live without sunshine,
they lock my cage, so I live without going anywhere,
they take each last tear I have, I live without tears,
they take my heart and rip it open, I live without heart,
they take my life and crush it, so I live without a future,
they say I am beastly and fiendish, so I have no friends,
they stop up each hope, so I have no passage out of hell,


Where Is David, the Next King of Israel

Where is David? . . . O God's people,
Saul has passed, the good and great.
Mourn for Saul the first-anointed —
Head and shoulders o'er the state.

He was found among the Prophets:
Judge and monarch, merged in one.
But the wars of Saul are ended
And the works of Saul are done.

Where is David, ruddy shepherd,
God's boy-king for Israel?
Mystic, ardent, dowered with beauty,
Singing where still waters dwell?

Prophet, find that destined minstrel
Wandering on the range to-day,


When You Were Reading Those Tormented Lines

When you were reading those tormented lines
In which the heart's resonant flame sends out glowing streams
And passion's fatal torrents rear up,-
Didn't you recall a single thing?

I can't believe it! That night on the steppe
When, in the midnight mist a premature dawn,
Transparent, lovely as a miracle,
Broke in the distance before you

And your unwilling eye was to this beauty drawn
To that majestic glow beyond the realm of darkness,-
How could it be that nothing whispered to you then:


When I Too Long Have Looked Upon Your Face

When I too long have looked upon your face,
Wherein for me a brightness unobscured
Save by the mists of brightness has its place,
And terrible beauty not to be endured,
I turn away reluctant from your light,
And stand irresolute, a mind undone,
A silly, dazzled thing deprived of sight
From having looked too long upon the sun.
Then is my daily life a narrow room
In which a little while, uncertainly,
Surrounded by impenetrable gloom,
Among familiar things grown strange to me


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