The Mossgrown Porches

When , as of old in Rome's imperial world,
Fair, conquered gods are from their temples hurled,
And some rude, vehement Peter puts to flight
Some serene Phœbus, lord of lore and light;
In wastes and wilds, by fount and caverned hill,
Secretly, furtively, are worshipped still,
With the sad zeal of vainly pious knees,
The ancient, the deposed divinities,
Heaven's outcasts, the great exiles of the sky,
Once mighty to do all things, save to die.

So, though in Kingdoms of the Lyre to-day
I see the new faiths push the old away—
See the hot hierophants of each strange shrine
Offer oblation to all gods but mine—
Yet, mid a revel of change, unchanged I turn
To the lorn haunts where older altars burn,
And seek, companioned by the lessening few
Whose faith is as mine own, the gods I knew;
Nor ever doubt, that among wondering men
These deathless will in triumph come again,
As sure as the droop'd year's remounting curve,
And reign anew, when I no more shall serve.
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