Alabaster

Like this alabaster box whose art
Is frail as a cassia-flower, is my heart,
Carven with delicate dreams and wrought
With many a subtle and exquisite thought.


Therein I treasure the spice and scent
Of rich and passionate memories blent
Like odours of cinnamon, sandal and clove,
Of song and sorrow and life and love.


Adonais

I weep for Adonais -he is dead!
O, weep for Adonais! though our tears
Thaw not the frost which binds so dear a head!
And thou, sad Hour, selected from all years
To mourn our loss, rouse thy obscure compeers,
And teach them thine own sorrow, say: "With me
Died Adonais; till the Future dares
Forget the Past, his fate and fame shall be
An echo and a light unto eternity!"

Where wert thou, mighty Mother, when he lay,
When thy Son lay, pierced by the shaft which flies
In darkness? where was lorn Urania


Advent of Spring

The city has fallen: only the hills and rivers remain.
In Spring the streets were green with grass and trees.
Sorrowing over the times, the flowers are weeping.
The birds startled my heart in fear of departing.
The beacon fires were burning for three months,
A letter from home was worth ten thousand pieces of gold.
I scratch the scant hairs on my white head,
And vainly attempt to secure them with a hairpin.


Again And Again, However We Know The Landscape Of Love

Again and again, however we know the landscape of love
and the little churchyard there, with its sorrowing names,
and the frighteningly silent abyss into which the others
fall: again and again the two of us walk out together
under the ancient trees, lie down again and again
among the flowers, face to face with the sky.


Translated by Stephen Mitchell


Again and Again

Again and again, however we know the landscape of love
and the little churchyard there, with its sorrowing names,
and the frighteningly silent abyss into which the others
fall: again and again the two of us walk out together
under the ancient trees, lie down again and again
among the flowers, face to face with the sky.


After You, Pilot

Dawn gilded over dunes of sand
That border Mobile Bay
The fleet, which under Farragut
In expectation lay.
For ere that rising sun should set,
Full many a sailor bold
Should perish, leaving but a name
On history's page of gold.

Others have sung and yet shall sing
Of Farragut's renown:
How to the Hartford's maintop lashed
He gained his conqueror's crown.
Let others sing those deeds while we,
In sorrow and in pride,
Tell how one gallant gentleman
With high decorum died.


Affliction

When thou didst entice to thee my heart,
I thought the service brave:
So many joys I writ down for my part,
Besides what I might have
Out of my stock of natural delights,
Augmented with thy gracious benefits.

I looked on thy furniture so fine,
And made it fine to me:
Thy glorious household-stuff did me entwine,
And 'tice me unto thee.
Such stars I counted mine: both heav'n and earth
Paid me my wages in a world of mirth.

What pleasures could I want, whose King I served?


Aaron Hatfield

Better than granite, Spoon River,
Is the memory-picture you keep of me
Standing before the pioneer men and women
There at Concord Church on Communion day.
Speaking in broken voice of the peasant youth
Of Galilee who went to the city
And was killed by bankers and lawyers;
My voice mingling with the June wind
That blew over wheat fields from Atterbury;
While the white stones in the burying ground
Around the Church shimmered in the summer sun.
And there, though my own memories


A Year Ago

I

I'm sitting by the fire tonight,
The cat purrs on the rug;
The room's abrim with rosy light,
Suavely soft and snug;
And safe and warm from dark and storm
It's cosiness I hug.
II
Then petulant the window pane
Quakes in the tempest moan,
And cries: "Forlornly in the rain
There starkly streams a stone,
Where one so dear who shared your cheer
Now lies alone, alone.
III
Go forth! Go forth into the gale
And pass and hour in prayer;


Abt Volger

(after he has been extemporizing upon the musical instrument of his invention)


Would that the structure brave, the manifold music I build,
Bidding my organ obey, calling its keys to their work,
Claiming each slave of the sound, at a touch, as when Solomon willed
Armies of angels that soar, legions of demons that lurk,
Man, brute, reptile, fly,---alien of end and of aim,
Adverse, each from the other heaven-high, hell-deep removed,---
Should rush into sight at once as he named the ineffable Name


Pages

Subscribe to RSS - sorrow